Islamic extremism and terrorism are not the same, callers argue - as Prevent is accused of not doing enough

9 February 2023, 11:56

Khalid from Leicester

Madeleine Wilson

By Madeleine Wilson

Nick Ferrari spoke to these callers after the counter-terror scheme, Prevent, was criticised in its latest review for not doing enough to tackle non-violent extremism.

Nick Ferrari at Breakfast spoke to Ikkey from Hackney after a new report questioned the efficacy of the counter-terrorism Prevent programme.

Ikkey, who was in the counter-terror scheme, states that there's a "conflation" between extremism and terrorism.

Telling Nick why he was part of the scheme, he said: "I came from a community full of supposed Islamists and I came from a school that bred maybe one or two kids that ran off to ISIS."

The call comes as the Prevent programme was reportedly not doing enough to tackle non-violent Islamist extremism.

Ikkey told Nick that the internet is an "open place" to explore extremism and gather information.

He said: "A lot of the things I was reviewing were just orthodox views of Islam and I feel like orthodox Islam is being conflated with violent extremism and terrorism."

He added: "It's not fair to say someone who holds a view of an Islamic state that's run correctly...or someone who believes that a woman should wear a niqab, believes in segregated society, because it says it in the Quran - it's not fair that they should be labeled Islamists, and by labelling them as Islamists, automatically the idea of violent Islamism."

READ more: Rishi Sunak's Prevent plan for critics of Britain 'very slippery slope', Iain Dale says

This caller says Prevent states the 'conflation' between extremism and terrorism.

Another caller, Khalid from Leicester said to Nick: "From the media and the government, the wording needs to be changed slightly.

"We need to all unite against oppression or the killing of innocents - it's ridiculous."

Nick responded: "But if people do it and misrepresent the faith of Islam in their view, what else are we going to refer to it as?"

Khalid replied: "First of all, I believe that the killing of innocents in Iraq, that's been one of the biggest recruiters of extremism.

"When you kill innocents and you see it happening again and again and again then that is going to create frustration in the hearts and minds of the people.

"You'll get a few minors that are going to kill innocent people as a reaction to that and it's totally abhorrent and completely against the teachings of Islam and anybody who says that's Islam can come and speak to me and I'll put them straight."

READ more: Prevent counter-terror scheme has 'chilling effect' on university life, report

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