Declares “educational and religious dimension” Key to Counterextremism Efforts
Washington, DC, October 2, 2015 (MACP) — In a speech to the Leaders’ Summit to Counter ISIL and Violent Extremism that took place alongside the United Nations General Assembly meeting earlier this week, Morocco’s King Mohammed VI urged leaders to adopt “an integrated strategy” to fight the spread of terrorism.
“To be sure, action in security, military and legal sectors plays a key role in the fight against extremism and terrorism,” he said in a speech read on his behalf by Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs Salaheddine Mezouar. “By itself, however, it remains insufficient… Just as important is the educational and religious dimension when fostering cultural values that advocate tolerance and moderation.”
The King described Morocco’s own “comprehensive strategy which combines preventive measures – to fight the causes of extremism – with the requisites for security and stability,” noting that “thanks to coordination and cooperation between the various security agencies in the country and the overhaul of laws, Morocco has managed to come up with adequate responses to fast-changing terrorist threats.”
The US State Department’s 2015 Terrorism Report noted that, in addition to successful security efforts, Morocco’s “comprehensive strategy for countering violent extremism (CVE)… prioritizes economic and human development goals in addition to tight control of the religious sphere and messaging. Morocco has accelerated its rollout of education and employment initiatives for youth – the population identified as most vulnerable to radicalization and recruitment – and has expanded the legal rights and political and social empowerment of women.”
On combating extremism, the King emphasized that “Morocco is ready to share its expertise with sister nations as well as the programs it has developed to disseminate the values of tolerant Islam and of openness to other religions, cultures and civilizations.”
The King also highlighted Morocco’s efforts as co-chair of the GCTF’s Working Group on Foreign Terrorist Fighters to “come up with an effective response to the Foreign Terrorist Fighters phenomenon and carry out an in-depth analysis of constantly changing terrorist trends.”
And he also promised that when Morocco takes over from Turkey the co-chairmanship of the GCTF in Spring 2016, Morocco will “spare no effort to make further contributions and be actively involved in international efforts aimed at combating extremism and terrorism for the advent of a more secure and stable world, in which solidarity and human values prevail.”
Contact: Jordana Merran, 202.470.2049
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