- Publication date
- 19 December 2022
- Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs
The developments taking place at the national, European and even global level can lead to big social, economic and environmental tensions that play out on the local level. These geopolitical and social developments might influence the breeding ground for polarisation, extremism and political violence. As such, this will impact the work of local and regional coordinators working on preventing and countering violent extremism (P/CVE). Therefore, it is important to be aware of the new developments and their potential impacts on local communities and the processes of radicalisation.
The RAN LOCAL Working Group organised a meeting on 15 and 16 November 2022 for local and regional P/CVE coordinators to take stock of how the current and emerging geopolitical developments and social transformations are impacting the breeding ground for radicalisation and shifting the extremist landscape. Participants also discussed the means and tools to deal with these new developments.
The following key outcomes were identified in the meeting:
- Local coordinators see that the changing extremist landscape they are facing is defined by war, energy prices, costs of living, the arrival of refugees, climate crisis, and the rise of anti-EU and nationalistic sentiments.
- Extremism is changing, and so should the local P/CVE strategy: the local P/CVE approach is often grounded in anti-jihadism. After the fall of the so-called caliphate, it was struggling with incorporating right-wing extremism and now also needs to deal with the new, blurry and hybrid forms of anti-government extremism.
- Social polarisation is increasing and trust in the authorities is shrinking, which might feed into hostile and extremist activities.
- Local government should apply a ‘2-steps-deeper’ approach: don’t focus on the extremism as we know it, but start from understanding the societal and political tensions and protests that might escalate and radicalise.
This paper presents the main conclusions of 2 days of presentations and lively group discussions. On day 1, participants discussed the new developments and political conflicts that might escalate and radicalise into violent extremism and terrorism. On day 2, local and regional P/CVE coordinators looked into the tools and capacities needed to be prepared and able to keep pace with developments as they emerge.