Lifecycle Initiative Toolkit

Identifying factors that make communities susceptible to radicalization to violence and preventing it from evolving and expanding in the earliest possible stage with a comprehensive set of measures is likely to have the greatest chance of success.

Prevention graphic

"Push" and "Pull" Factors

Prevention efforts must address both “push” and “pull” factors that create conditions for violent extremism to take root and gain traction, as well as factors that allow for recruitment and facilitation. Understanding the nature of the challenge is at the heart of the Ankara Memorandum on Good Practices for a Multi-Sectoral Approach to Countering Violent Extremism. As its title suggests, the Ankara Memorandum stresses the value of governments employing a multi-agency approach as well as the sorts of whole-of-society approaches recommended by the UN Secretary-General’s Plan of Action for Preventing Violent Extremism.

It addresses:

  • The role of government institutions
  • The role of Agencies
  • Civil society in CVE
  • Public-private partnerships
  • The role of law enforcement agencies
  • Socioeconomic approaches

Hedayah has developed an excellent complement to the Ankara Memorandum in its Guidelines and Good Practices for Developing National CVE Strategies. The Hedayah Guidelines can help countries develop a prevention-focused CVE framework when designing their CVE strategies in line with the UN Secretary-General’s Plan of Action.

 

Locally-Relevant Initiatives

Taking the position that locally-relevant initiatives are central to the success of any CVE or prevention strategy, the Good Practices on Community Engagement and Community-Oriented Policing as Tools to Counter Violent Extremism provides tools that focus on building trust with local communities and engaging them as partners to develop information-driven, community-based solutions to local issues.

Such engagement can raise a community’s awareness about the threat of violent extremism and provide it with the necessary tools to intervene and prevent radicalization to violence. The Doha Plan of Action for Community-Oriented Policing in a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Context offers an illustrative list of rule of law-based, rights respecting, community-oriented policing initiatives aimed at youth, women, families, and communities in general, as well as training programs for both law enforcement and communities.

 

Educational Initiatives

 

Promoting critical thinking skills among youth and harnessing the positive potential of education and educational institutions in prevention efforts are detailed in the GCTF’s Abu Dhabi Memorandum on Good Practices for Education and Countering Violent Extremism, which served as a reference for UNESCO’s A Teacher’s Guide on the Prevention of Violent Extremism, and provides context about violent extremism, offers tips on how to manage the classroom discussion, and key messages to deliver.

Additionally, Hedayah developed the Abu Dhabi Acton Plan on the Role of CVE in Education, which catalogues a range of programs that can help in the design and implementation of the Abu Dhabi Memorandum’s good practices. More recently, the GCTF and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s Islamic Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) have together launched a dialog on the role of religious education in promoting peace and preventing violence that should provide additional, more specialized recommendations.

 

Roles of Families

Other tools intended to help mobilize civil society take into consideration the central roles that women and families can have in preventing radicalization to violence. The GCTF, together with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), first developed the Good Practices on Women and Countering Violent Extremism, which includes a section on countering women and girls’ involvement in violent extremism and terrorism.

The GCTF then developed The Role of Families in Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism: Strategic Recommendations and Programming Options, which addresses the vital role families play in preventing and countering violent extremism. From shaping attitudes toward non-violence to serving as “front line” actors in identifying signs of possible radicalization to violence, preventing such radicalization’s onset, and intervening in the radicalization to violence process, families represent key prevention partners. The document also recognizes family members can be part of the problem in some cases, especially when the parent-child relationship does not exist or is strained. In such cases a credible community figure or mentor can play a critical role in engaging an individual who may otherwise be susceptible to violent extremism.

 

Roadmap of Initiatives

The Plan of Action for Identifying and Countering Terrorist Recruiters and Facilitators provides an important, more specialized roadmap of example initiatives for governments to consider when dealing with the complex challenges posed by terrorist recruiters and facilitators. The Plan of Action builds upon the relevant good practices in The Hague-Marrakech Memorandum on Good Practices for a More Effective Response to the FTF Phenomenon, which contains material related to preventing, detecting, and intervening against recruitment and facilitation as well as the criminal justice sector responses.

Furthermore, the Plan of Action builds upon the Rabat Memorandum on Good Practices for Effective Counterterrorism Practice in the Criminal Justice Sector, which notes the need for a broad-based system of criminal offenses that include inchoate or preventive ones such as:

  • Attempt
  • Conspiracy
  • Providing material support
  • Training
  • Incitement
  • Solicitation

Also of relevance are the Recommendations Related to the Full Range of Preventative and Rehabilitative Measures that can be Employed in a Criminal Justice System, as well as the Neuchatel Memorandum on Juvenile Justice in a Counterterrorism Context, which provides recommended good practices that take into consideration the vulnerability of youth and the need for a different, tailored approach, such as developing “off-ramps” or alternatives to prosecution, so as to avoid having a youngster’s contact with the criminal justice system turn into an experience that radicalizes him or her to violence.

A Teacher’s Guide on the Prevention of Violent Extremism


This is UNESCO’s first Teacher’s Guide on the Prevention of Violent Extremism through education. This document has been developed in direct response to the needs of UNESCO’s Member States as expressed in the landmark 197/EX Decision 46 taken by UNESCO’s Executive Board in October 20151, which calls on the Organization to enhance its capacity to provide assistance to countries as they work to strengthen their education sector responses to violent extremism, including through human-rights based Global Citizenship Education (GCED) programmes, keeping in mind national contexts.
 

Read more...

UN Secretary-General’s Plan of Action for Preventing Violent Extremism


Violent extremism is an affront to the purposes and principles of the United Nations. It undermines peace and security, human rights and sustainable development. No country or region is immune from its impacts.

Read more...

Doha Plan of Action for Community-Oriented Policing in a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Context


This action plan enumerates an illustrative list of rule of law-based COP initiatives that ensure a human rights-centered approach for interested GCTF members and partners to consider taking forward to advance the implementation of those good practices.

Read more...

Guidelines and Good Practices for Developing National CVE Strategies


This document1 offers guidance for national governments interested in developing or refining a national countering violent extremism (CVE) strategy, or CVE components as part of a wider counter-terrorism (CT) strategy or framework. It includes good practices that have emerged from experiences in this field over the past few years and draws on them to inform future efforts. Where a national strategy is not currently attainable, this document outlines initial steps that could be taken to lay the groundwork for future national CVE strategy development, e.g. initial dialogue between governments and communities targeted for radicalization and recruitment. In this context, CVE refers to the wide spectrum of largely preventive actions and interventions that involves identifying the local factors of radicalization and recruitment to violent extremism, and designing programming to prevent and counter these processes. This includes efforts that may be undertaken by governments, international organizations and civil society.
 

Read more...

Hague Marrakech Memorandum on Good Practices for a More Effective Response to the FTF Phenomenon


The threat posed by “Foreign Terrorist Fighters” (FTFs)1 – individuals who travel abroad to a State other than their States of residence or nationality to engage in, undertake, plan, prepare, carry out or otherwise support terrorist activity or to provide or receive training to do so (often labeled as “terrorist training”) – is a major issue for international and national security. Governments continue to grapple with how to address the complex set of challenges posed by this threat. Many countries are concerned that the rising number of people, especially youth, radicalized to violence and traveling to fight or train alongside terrorist groups in conflict and non-conflict areas will become further radicalized and pose a new terrorist threat to their home or third countries, including transit countries.
 

Read more...

GCTF Lifecycle Initiative Annotated Guide


The world today is facing an increasingly sophisticated terrorist threat that is transnational, decentralized, and dynamic. Terrorists in one country are now able to inspire, recruit, and radicalize individuals in other countries to commit terrorist acts either where they live, or to travel abroad to become foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs). These same FTFs can then travel home or to a third country to commit further acts of terrorism. Meanwhile, domestic terrorists and home-grown violent extremists continue to constitute threats in their own right, with some adopting techniques used by transnational terrorists or even seeking to affiliate with them. While criminal justice and security methods aimed at imprisoning convicted terrorists will continue to feature uppermost in counterterrorism efforts, there is a growing recognition that a broader approach is needed to address these complex challenges of radicalization and recruitment, one involving a wider range of interventions to address these issues. This more expansive approach is one that can be applied across the full life-cycle of radicalization to violence, from preventing susceptible individuals from being attracted to the ideologies promoted by terrorist groups, to intervening with individuals who are on the path to radicalization to violence, to the rehabilitation and reintegration back into society of some of those already radicalized individuals

Read more...

Good Practices on Community Engagement and Community-Oriented Policing as tools to Counter Violent Extremism


In its efforts to counter violent extremism, the GCTF has highlighted the importance of multi-sectoral approaches that involve government and non-government agencies, the private sector, religious leaders, and civil society. Specifically, the GCTF emphasized the importance of understanding and addressing community needs as a way to tackle violent extremism.  A critical component of this community level engagement is community-oriented policing, which is collaboration between the police and the community that identifies and solves community problems. 

Read more...

Plan of Action for Identifying and Countering Recruiters and Facilitators


Action plan that enumerates an illustrative list of actionable, rule-of-law based measures and initiatives that States are currently employing that have indicators of being successful in the effort to identify and counter the activities of terrorist recruiters and facilitators.

Read more...

Role of Families in Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism


Family members are usually the first and best equipped to recognize signs of potential radicalization to violence.

GCTF created a new working group focused on the important role of families in preventing and countering violent extremism. The working group underlined the fact that family members are usually the first and best equipped to recognize signs of potential radicalization to violence. Despite this understanding, families are often under-utilized in this area, probably due to the challenging nature of such partnerships between governments and non-governmental actors.  

Read more...

Abu Dhabi Memorandum on Good Practices for Education and Countering Violent Extremism


This non-binding good practices document focuses on the ways in which education can be used as a resource and a tool by policymakers, teachers and educators, community-based and other non-governmental organizations, and families and parents to prevent and counter violent extremism.

Read more...

Abu Dhabi Plan of Action for Education and Countering Violent Extremism


A series of expert meetings, workshops, conferences and research hosted by the GCTF, Hedayah and various other partners convened educators, experts, practitioners and policymakers to share experiences and enhance understanding on education and countering violent extremism (CVE). These events also led to the drafting and development of the Abu Dhabi Memorandum for Good Practices on Education and Countering Violent Extremism, which was adopted at the September 2014 GCTF Fifth Ministerial Meeting in New York City. The topic of education and CVE was also a key component of the agenda at the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism in February 2015. A preliminary list of recommended action items was developed as part of the Follow-on Action Agenda coming out of the Summit. In addition, the European Union’s Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN), specifically the RAN PREVENT Working Group, has developed a Manifesto titled “Empowering Educators and Schools” aimed at outlining principles for ministries of education investing in CVE efforts within the European context which was endorsed in March 2015 by the Ministers of Education within the European Union. Drawing on these multilateral developments and existing body of knowledge on education and CVE, this non-binding action plan for education and CVE provides an illustrative list for how to advance and implement the good practices already outlined in the Abu Dhabi Memorandum. 1
 

Read more...

Ankara Memorandum on Good Practices for a Multi-Sectoral Approach to Countering Violent Extremism


This good practices document addresses the role of government institutions, agencies, and civil society in countering violent extremism (CVE). It was produced on the basis of responses by Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) members to the questionnaire that was prepared by the Turkish National Police’s International Center for Terrorism and Transnational Crime (UTSAM) in cooperation with the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This document is also informed by the discussions at GCTF CVE Working Group workshops on multisectoral approaches to CVE held in Antalya and Ankara, Turkey, in December 2012 and March 2013. These workshops in Turkey were organized as a foundational part of the GCTF’s CVE Working Group’s work stream focused on institutions. This document is also complementary to the Good Practices on Community Engagement and Community-Oriented Policing as Tools to Counter Violent Extremism. 

This non-binding document aims to provide GCTF members and other interested stakeholders with a non-exhaustive list of practices that reflect the experience of a number of members in countering violent extremism. 

All states are encouraged to consider using these non-binding, good practices while taking their local needs and conditions into consideration, as they look to develop and implement national CVE policies and/or programs, as part of a wider effort to implement Pillar I of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy. The implementation of these practices should be consistent with applicable international human-rights law and take into account the varied histories, cultures, and legal systems among States. 

This Ankara Memorandum on Good Practices for a Multi-Sectoral Approach to CVE complements the June 2012 Rome Memorandum good practices on prison disengagement and rehabilitation of violent-extremist offenders. It also directly relates to recent GCTF CVE Working Group workshops on the role of community engagement and community-oriented policing in CVE, which were held in Washington, DC in March 2013, and which led to the development of a separate set of good practices. These good practices are intended to complement those contained in the Ankara Memorandum and the work of the UN Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force and its relevant entities. 

 

Read more...

Good Practices on Women and Countering Violent Extremism


Women have a critical role to play in CVE – one that has not always received the attention it deserves. The GCTF seeks to bring greater focus on this issue by developing good practices on how women can be most effectively integrated into CVE efforts, beginning with the initial stages of program design and policy development.

Read more...

Madrid Memorandum on Good Practices for Assistance to Victims of Terrorism Immediately after the Attack and in Criminal Proceedings


Declaration on Counterterrorism and the Rule of Law calls for members of the Global Counterterrorism Forum to “develop good practices for an effective and rule of law-based criminal justice sector response to terrorism."

Read more...

Madrid Declaration on Victims of Terrorism


Commitment to assist and support the victims of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, according to our national laws and international principles.

Read more...

Plan of Action on Victims of Terrorism


This action plan includes the need to further strengthen efforts to support victims of terrorism in all of its manifestation as well as associations of victims of terrorism.

Read more...

The Rabat Memorandum on Good Practices for Effective Counterterrorism Practice in the Criminal Justice Sector


Good practices for addressing terrorism must be built on a functional criminal justice system that is capable of handling ordinary criminal offenses while protecting the human rights of the accused.

Read more...

Addendum to The Hague-Marrakech Memorandum on Good Practices for a More Effective Response to the FTF Phenomenon, with a focus on Returning FTFs


Addendum relating to elements of Good Practice of the GCTF’s The Hague-Marrakech Memorandum on Good Practices for a More Effective Response to the FTF Phenomenon and other relevant issues pertaining to RFTFs.

Read more...