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THE MULTI-DIMENSIONAL ROOTS OF VIOLENT EXTREMISM

Posted on 12 January 2018 by cbcs_mike

Fifty three multi-sectoral Bangsamoro leaders converged in a dialogue-consultation on “Promoting Peace and Preventing Violent Extremisms” with a theme: “Promoting peace is Preventing Extremism” held at Estosan Hotel, Cotabato City on January 9-11, 2018.

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The activity is a Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society (CBCS) sponsored with a support from United Nations Development Program (UNDP) – Mindanao Office as their contribution in understanding the two critical but contrasting issues – peace processes and the rise of violent extremism.

In an aim to understand deeply the issue of rising violent extremisms, four prominent Resource Speakers were invited to shed light and present the issue from different lenses. Prof. Rufa Guiam spoke of: “Structural Roots of Extremism in the Bangsamoro from Transitional Justice Lens”.

From the Resource Person’s presentation, she stressed the Four Pillars of Transitional Justice as (1) right to know (the truth) (2) the right to justice as to the case of the Bangsamoro addressing the historical and human rights violations (3) the right to reparation and (4) right to guarantee of non-recurrence. And that without resolving or neglect of the above transitional justice, violent conflict will become a “vicious cycle” in any particular group of people or nations much more in the Bangsamoro context. Thus becomes a potential push-factor for a rising number of people joining the violent extremists’ ideologies.

On the same occasion Dr. Danda Juanday, Administrative Officer of the Local Government of Cotabato City in his opening and welcome message revealed that in their own initiatives in order to understand the root of violent extremism, discredit Islam as the reasons of peoples joining the extremists groups. He emphasized that majority of the communities involved in the studies pointed out that: (1) socio-economic reasons and (2) political dissatisfaction as drivers of peoples joining the group, however the biggest of them all he said is “people are becoming irritants and impatient over long-lingering non-resolution of the Bangsamoro problem.”

The idea was substantiated by Prof. Guiam who stressed that: “Only 1% among the many reasons why people join the violent extremists points to Islam as the reason”, according to some global studies.

She further quoted Dr. Garry LaFree and Bill Braniff who explained in their course that: “..various widely accepted statements about terrorism which were not based on empirical or scientific evidence and, in fact, had been proven wrong by research based on the Global Terrorist Database.” This is to refute the widely propagated issues that terrorisms and violent extremism always been connected with Islam or to Muslims the world-over.

By Mike Kulat

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