the High Representative for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations
“Countering and Preventing Violent Extremism through Communications and Empowerment Strategies Involving Youth”
A Side-Event in the margins of the High-Level Conference on Counter-Terrorism
28 June 2018, 1.15 to 2.30 p.m. | United Nations Headquarters Conference Room 9
Ambassador Kai Sauer, Permanent Representative of Finland to the United Nations;
Ambassador Sima Sami Bahous, Permanent Representative of Jordan to the United Nations;
Mr. Weixiong Chen, Deputy Executive-Director of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED);
Mr. Jehangir Khan, Director, United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism;
Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you all for joining us in today’s side-event on “Countering and Preventing Violent Extremism through Communications and Empowerment Strategies involving Youth”.
At the outset, I wish to express a special thanks to the Permanent Missions of Finland and Jordan for co-sponsoring the event. I seize the opportunity to commend their hard work and commitment as co-facilitators of the 6th Review of the UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy.
I also applaud the work of the co-organizers: the Working Group on Communications of the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force (CTITF), in particular the UN Department of Public Information and CTED, as well as my team , the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations.
Here a special thanks goes to Mr. Voronkov, Under-Secretary-General of the Office of Counter-Terrorism, Madam Coninsx, Executive Director of CTED, Mr. Khan, and all members of your respective teams.
There is no question that security-based counter-terrorism measures remain essential.
Preventing and countering violent extremism as and when conducive to terrorism, however, also means addressing the underlying conditions that drive individuals to join violent extremist groups.
For these reasons, our counter-terrorism efforts require a whole-of-society approach. This involves engaging in targeted dialogue, promoting community-led initiatives to address local grievances, and building trusting partnerships with grass-roots organizations. No government or multi-lateral institution alone is able to reach as broadly or deeply into a society.
This is particularly true when it comes to communicating with youth and empowering youth-based organizations to counter the appeal of violent extremism. I will not elaborate further as we will have a presentation of the work we do towards that end later in the next segment of the agenda.
I thank our distinguished guests for taking the time out of their busy schedules to be with us this afternoon. I look forward to your presentations.
I thank you and I look forward to the panel discussion.