Seventy-five Muslim youth leaders, yesterday, held a one day workshop which concluded with laying strategies to enhance cooperation with Rwanda National Police (RNP) in raising awareness and fighting radicalism and extremism.
The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel K. Gasana presided over the closing of the workshop at the RNP General Headquarters in Kacyiru, which was also attended by the Mufti of Rwanda, Sheikh Salim Hitimana.
IGP Gasana reminded the Muslim youth leaders to always “consider the national vision” that is tailored towards “national transformation, unity, thinking big and accountability.”
“We have since acquired knowledge and skills of dealing with issues of insecurity but we need cooperation and coordinated efforts from all Rwandans in preventing radicalization and extremism,” the Police Chief said.
The workshop was held under the theme; “Building a Secure World to ensure Safety for All.”
“Use your influence to direct your peers in the right path; ensure they are not lured in ill-acts… Collaboration is one way we can jointly prevent radicalization from rooting in our communities; whenever you encounter a situation of radicalization or extremism, quickly inform the relevant authorities…this is what community policing means… to work together to prevent any ill-acts,” he said.
He challenged them to focus on “self development” and the country in general.
During the meeting, Muslim youth leaders resolved to establish anti-terrorism clubs in their respective areas of leadership and ensure they are operational.
The IGP pledged the institution’s support them their activities geared towards public safety.
Mufti Hitimana, on his part, urged the youth leaders to make formation of the anti-terrorism clubs a priority.
He, however, pointed out that despite a few cases of radicalization that were reported previously, there is a positive attitude within the Islamic community to contribute to safety and security of the country.
During the workshop, participants deliberated on different topics including the current situation of radicalization in the region; how Islam views terrorism; the role of Muslim youth in promoting peace and living in harmony with believers of other religions, radicalization and and why it is a national security concern, among others.
The Commissioner for Counter-terrorism in RNP, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Denis Basabose said that the workshop was aimed at networking, enhancing partnership and tutoring Muslim youths on how to avoid being radicalized.
He pointed out that although there haven’t been many cases in Rwanda, such kind of meeting provides a framework for preventing radicalism and extremism.