Launch of a dialogue for the creation of a network of religious leaders to prevent violent extremism in Iraq [EN/AR] – Iraq
Baghdad, Iraq, March 20, 2022 – On March 19, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Iraq and the National Committee for the Implementation of the Prevention of Violent Extremism Strategy at the Advisory Council on National Security launched the first dialogue session on the creation of the Network of Religious Leaders for the Prevention of Violent Extremism. Extremism in Iraq.
A high-level dialogue session brought together members of the National Committee on the Implementation of the Prevention of Violent Extremism Strategy and members of the Shia and Sunni, Yazidi, Christian and Sabian endowments, in addition to the Holy Shrine of ‘AlHussein. One of the main objectives of the Network of Religious Leaders will be to promote a moderate religious discourse and to increase awareness and support for community initiatives on the prevention of violent extremism in Iraq.
This dialogue session contributes to UNDP’s integrated approach to preventing violent extremism and supporting social cohesion in Iraq, including support to the National Committee, through capacity development of sub-committees located in various governorates on the implementation of the strategy for the prevention of violent extremism in Iraq, as well as the creation of networks of interfaith religious leaders in the Iraqi governorates on the prevention of violent extremism.
UNDP Resident Representative in Iraq, Zena Ali-Ahmad, said: “The creation of a network of religious leaders builds on UNDP Iraq’s support to the Iraqi government in the prevention of violent extremism, with a integrated and comprehensive linked to the engagement with a representative sample of Iraqis. society, including religious leaders, youth and civil society. This will strengthen social cohesion in Iraq.
Mr. Ali Abdullah Albedeiri, Chairman of the National Committee on the Implementation of the National Strategy for the Prevention of Violent Extremism, said: “The National Committee prioritizes the influential role of religious leaders in society, which will be further enhanced through the network in spreading a moderate discourse and will contribute to the implementation of the strategy.
“There is a consensus between the different religious sects on the need for this network. This session will provide important recommendations to continue forming a network to work on the prevention of violent extremism,” says Ali Al-Qarawi, from the Holy Shrine of AlHussein.
“Today’s meeting to establish the network was open and transparent in advocating for moderate speech and addressing hate speech. The network’s purpose is to monitor, analyze and respond hate speech that leads to conflict,” says Mohammed Salah Rashad of the Sunni Endowment.
“Today’s initiative was a first step in establishing the network to support Iraq’s prevention of violent extremism strategy. We agreed to mobilize our communities to prevent violent extremism,” says Dr Ihsan Jafar, from the Shia Endowment.
“Today we discussed several ideas and recommendations, and we are optimistic that we will implement good initiatives within this network to prevent violent extremism before it happens,” said Raad Jabbar, from the Minorities Endowment.
Supporting the Prevention of Violent Extremism (PVE) in Iraq is part of UNDP’s social cohesion program aimed at promoting stronger, peaceful and more cohesive communities in all regions of Iraq.
Miriam Pineau, Communications Analyst | +964 790 110 1982