Morocco and the European Union (EU) have launched a two-year initiative aimed at countering and preventing violent extremism through educational approaches.
The initiative, unveiled during the Global Counterterrorism Forum’s (GCTF) 21st meeting in Cairo last May, is taking center stage in the global battle against extremism.
Morocco and the EU, co-chairing the launch video, introduced the GCTF’s initiative titled “Education for the Prevention and Combat of Violent Extremism Leading to Terrorism.”
The program is organized in collaboration with the Center of Excellence for Countering Violent Extremism, known as “Hedayah,” and aims to delve into emerging challenges, successes, and best practices in preventing and combating violent extremism within the educational domain.
Morocco’s Foreign Affairs Minister Nasser Bourita said the program’s primary goal is to “provide individuals with access to education to help them develop the capacities necessary to challenge extremist narratives and promote peace.”
Emphasizing the initiative’s focus on drawing lessons from successful practices in Africa, especially in the terrorism-ridden Sahel region, the program seeks insights for effective strategies against extremism leading to terrorism.
The EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Joseph Borell also added that the program aims “to help develop societies that are more tolerant and resilient against terrorism and violent extremism.”
The implementation of the initiative aligns with the GCTF’s framework and best practices, notably following the Abu Dhabi Memorandum on Good Practices in Education to Combat Violent Extremism.
Over the two years of the initiative, a tailor-made program for training educators is also set to be formulated and delivered, in addition to a toolkit and a set of indicators to help evaluate prevention programs.
Morocco has introduced similar programs over the last few years, aiming to stamp out extremist ideologies through education, as well as to re-integrate inmates into society.