PRESS RELEASE: New Briefing – IHRC response to the Prevent Violent Extremism strategy


Islamic Human Rights Commission

19 October 2009

PRESS RELEASE: New Briefing – IHRC response to the Prevent Violent Extremism strategy

The briefing argues that if the inherent flaws of the Preventing Violent Extremism strategy are not considered then the project will fail. The briefing proposes that the main flaws are the following;

•    The Prevent Strategy assumes that the British Muslim community can only be viewed through the single prism of counter-terrorism efforts
•    It does not properly acknowledge the primary motivations for terrorism but focuses on periphery issues like democratic participation, education etc.
•    The Prevent strategy uses poorly defined and loaded terms like radicalism and extremism which has meant that faith or level of practice is seen within the rubric of extremism allowing for a McCarthyite culture of spying developing against the Muslim community.
•    Extremism from the far right as seen by recent events poses a real threat which has been more or less ignored.
•    The Prevent strategy can be seen as an attempt at social engineering by establishing and funding organisations that lack any credibility within the Muslim community and have set agendas that  promote what kind of Muslim a Muslim should be.

IHRC Chair Massoud Shadjareh states:

“The Prevent Strategy as a document attempting to win the hearts and minds of Muslims work on the assumption that the entire British Muslim community needs ‘fixing’ because of the actions of a few criminals.  The notion that by advocating a policy where the Muslim Community is  targeted and encouraged to spy on other Muslims will somehow win the hearts and minds of the community not only runs counter to common-sense but is counter-productive.”

The full briefing can be viewed here;

For more information please contact the Press Office on (+44) 20 8904 4222 or (+44) 7958522196, email:[ENDS]


The Islamic Human Rights Commission is an NGO in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

Islamic Human Rights Commission
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