Extremism and terrorism pose a big threat to global security. Radicalization trends are strongly rising, impacting in a significant way our societies, economies and political strategies. It is essential to reach a greater understanding of radicalization in order to develop long term strategies that will be successful in the struggle against extremist-inspired violence.
De-radicalization, together with counter-terrorism and anti-radicalization actions, plays an important role in efforts to dismantle networks of violence and eradicate the roots of terrorism.
De-radicalization means a change in people’s beliefs and attitudes that justify an extremist interpretation of ideologies, which can lead to terrorist acts. The crucial element for de-radicalization is the recognition that violence is illegitimate and in fact ineffective. It parallels a similar process of disengagement from the use of violence to achieve one’s objectives.
Extremist ideologies have a deep causal nexus with Genocides and Mass atrocities, because of the role that they play in legitimating violent attitudes and due to their inclusion in monitoring criteria used in prevention and risk assessment models.
Under this lens, de-radicalization could be seen also as an ideological strategy useful in giving responses and solutions not only to terrorism but also to the potential for mass atrocities.
For these reasons, the Budapest Centre is actively operating in the field of de-radicalization through the definition of trainings, promoting dialogue efforts with moderate representatives of religious communities, implementing projects with the view of strengthening existent counter-narratives to extremist ones and identifying best de-radicalization practices that may be shared within the international community.
Read here the position paper on tools to fight terrorism: Are there other ways to fight terrorism?