Press release – CG058(2015)
Mayors, councillors and local representatives from 22 European countries call for the creation of an alliance of European cities to prevent radicalisation
Aarhus, 18.11.2015 – Attending the International Conference on the prevention of radicalisation leading to violent extremism, a hundred or so mayors, councillors and local representatives from 22 European countries adopted a joint declaration. They call for concerted action by local authorities, in close consultation with national governments, as part of an alliance of European cities to counter the increase in radicalisation and the acts of extreme violence to which it gives rise.
The declaration highlights the exceptional nature of the network constituted by the millions of mayors and local councillors throughout Europe. “This unique network of elected representatives can contribute, through its members’ knowledge of their area and population, to an early warning system for any drift towards radicalisation. We ask national authorities to systematically include local decision-makers in the drawing up and implementation of strategies that are being developed at European and national levels”, declared the conference participants.
They undertook to adopt integrated approaches to ensure that all local stakeholders are involved: civil society, faith-based organisations, social, educational, security and justice services. They also suggest launching an alliance of cities for the prevention of radicalisation leading to violent extremism.
In this connection, they suggest that to assist local authorities and underpin this network steps should be taken to establish a digital platform to exchange initiatives, experiences and resources that are already in place in the fight against radicalisation. Lastly, in order to continue this initiative they invite local and regional elected representatives to meet in Rotterdam in 2016 at a European summit of mayors.
This conference was jointly organised by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe and the European Forum for Urban Security. It will be followed, on 19 and 20 November, by a conference on “Building resilience to radicalisation and violent extremism” organised by the City of Aarhus.
Saida THEOPHILE, Institutional communication officer, Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Tel: +33 (0)3 90 21 48 95, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Elsa FONTANILLE, Communication manager, European Forum for Urban Security (Efus), Tel: + 33 (0) 1 40 64 49 00, Email:email@example.com