CPAU organized a series of community engagement around the role of women and youth in preventing violent extremism in both Laghman and Kabul province
Unemployed, marginalized, and impoverished young men are more vulnerable to recruitment into violent extremism in Afghanistan and the region. However, we have also seen radicalization of young individuals that are seemingly well integrated, coming from comfortable backgrounds, and succeeding in education and other programs, including our higher education institutions. Youth may join these violent extremist groups because they offer economic incentives, the sense of belonging, as well as empowerment a sense of adventure and a sense of helping others. Providing youth with opportunities to build positive identities through community engagement, civic participation and livelihoods can provide alternatives to violent extremism.
In Afghanistan women are partners in prevention of conflict as well as agents of change. They play a crucial role in understanding early signs of radicalization and in and around their household and family. They can help prevent radicalization. Since civil society organizations have an essential role to play in preventing and countering violent extremism, in the month of November 2015 CPAU, as part of its countering violent extremism initiatives, organized a series of engagements around the role of women and youth in preventing violent extremism both in Laghman and Kabul provinces.
The two day conference held towards the end of these series of engagements where a renowned international Islamic scholar was invited to, offered venues for exchanges and other discussion on social, religious, economic, and political issues including providing platforms where peaceful narratives to violent extremism can develop and take root and bring a degree of accountability to the actions of law enforcement and other security forces, thereby helping to prevent human rights violations that can be a driver of violent extremism.