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Flawed counter-extremism strategy has failed, admits minister

Flawed counter-extremism strategy has failed, admits minister

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On
Jan 16, 2016 - 18:09

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The struggle against extremism has failed in Afghanistaninfo-icon due to political, ideological and business considerations on the part of relevant officials, Minister of Hajjinfo-icon and Religious Affairs Faiz Mohammad Osmani said on Saturday.

Addressing a three-day conferenceon strategy against extremism, he said one reason behind the failure of the campaign was the government’s flawed approach to the phenomenon that could be better tackled through awareness and educationinfo-icon.

Over the past 10 years, radicalismhad been dealt with on a political and ideological basis, with largely commercial media being unable to highlight the root causes of the problem, he claimed. Since the issue was not properly explained to the masses, the drive fizzled out, he argued.

“The root causes of the problem and the reasons behind rising extremism should be properly identified and the vision of people affected the areas assessed before a comprehensive strategy is devised,” the minister suggested.

The currently anti-extremism drive needs to be reviewed and experiences of other Islamic countries followed, Osmani believed, warning that any struggle based on political and business consideration offered no viable solutions to the complex issue.

A public representative from Kunar province in Wolesi Jirgainfo-icon and member of the High Peace Councilinfo-icon, Shahzada Shahid, said: “Extremism is in conflict with the religionand the teachings of Islam; it’s being used as a means of misusing the religion.”

The lawmaker called for involving religious scholars in the process by creating a Fatwainfo-icon Centre to give its ruling on extremism, which was alien to Islam.

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