Morocco Adopted Comprehensive Strategy Becoming Pioneer In Fight Against Terrorism And Violent Extremism: Conference

Morocco Adopted Comprehensive Strategy Becoming Pioneer In Fight Against Terrorism And Violent Extremism: Conference

Rabat, February 17 (TNA) Morocco has adopted a comprehensive and integrated strategy in its fight against terrorism and violent extremism, which enabled it to become a pioneer in this field and enjoy wide international recognition, said officials taking part in the annual international conference on "Combating Violent Extremism: New Responses to New Challenges" that opened on Tuesday in Rabat.

On this occasion, the director of the Central Bureau of Judicial Investigation (BCIJ), Habboub Cherkaoui, said that the national strategy adopted by the Kingdom since the events of 2003 gave it a pioneering position at the regional and international levels in this area.

This policy yielded positive results as evidenced by the achievements of the BCIJ, which managed to disband a series of terrorist cells and nip in the bud their terrorist projects in the Kingdom, he said.

Morocco has adopted effective measures at all levels, including legal and security aspects, restructuring of the religious field, the socio-economic dimension and international cooperation, in accordance with the standards in force and full respect of the law and human rights, pursuant to the High Guidelines of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, Cherkaoui underlined.

For his part, the Director of Penal Affairs and Pardons at the Ministry of Justice, Hicham Mellati, stressed that the Kingdom has established a criminal policy that complements the security-oriented policy by strengthening the legal arsenal. The Kingdom has also consolidated its international cooperation through the conclusion of bilateral agreements in the field of violent extremism and terrorism, which reached 80 agreements to date.

Organized by the Moroccan Observatory on Extremism and Violence (OMEV), in partnership with the DGAPR, the Policy Center for the New South, and the Rabita Mohammadia of Ulema, this three-day conference is marked by the participation of experts from different continents and countries, notably Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Mauritania, Senegal, Nigeria, Kenya, Spain, France, Great Britain, Italy, Switzerland, Portugal, the United States, Austria, Romania, Malta, and Egypt, as well as regional and international institutions, in particular, the United Nations Counterterrorism Directorate.

According to Mellati, the security-oriented approach is not sufficient as the fight against ideas that fuel extremism and terrorism requires the convergence of security and criminal policies with preventive and proactive public policies to quell the motives leading to this type of extremism. In that regard, the official called for developing a national action plan mustering various policies to develop a comprehensive vision on fighting this scourge.

The Secretary-General of the General Delegation for Prison Administration and Reintegration (DGAPR), Younes Jebrane, insisted that Morocco's general strategy, based on pro-activity, religious immunization and the fight against precariousness, has succeeded in managing this issue, thanks to the close coordination between all bodies.

On DGAPR's management of the case of detainees convicted on terrorism and violent extremism charges, Jebrane said it is based on a multidimensional approach, encompassing security, integration and qualification of prison staff.

On the contribution of the Rabita Mohammedia of Ulema to efforts to combat trends of terrorism and violent extremism, the president of the Center for Studies and Research in Values, Mohamed Belkbir, noted that it is not limited to the security-oriented approach as it includes the method of intellectual confrontation.

There are two main poles to the phenomenon of terrorism and violent extremism, he said, the pole of the theorists and the pole of the actors on the ground, which are the driving force of extremism and terrorism among young people and women.

The Rabita wants to protect and immunize these categories by convincing them of rejecting extremism to weaken the theorists. To that end, it has adopted tools and methods to dismantle religious discourse, its mechanisms, and conceptual apparatus, through 20 booklets aimed at developing the immunity of the youth to extremism, he said.

Due to the current state of health emergency, the conference took place in-person, while guaranteeing the prevention and safety conditions for participants, and via teleconference.

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