Regional Workshop on Prosecution, Detention, Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters begins today
Rakitje – Regional expert workshop “Prosecution, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration of Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters”, organised by Centre for Security Cooperation - RACVIAC in cooperation with Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) and Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina started in Rakitje, Croatia, today.
The workshop is to focus on identifying the challenges, priorities, lessons learned, best practices, and engagement of civil society organizations (CSOs) in the process of dealing with returning foreign terrorist fighters.
Welcoming the participants RACVIAC Director Ambassador Haydar Berk reiterated the role of RACVIAC in furthering regional cooperation, trust and confidence, in which active involvement of the economies in the region is essential to come to common solutions for the benefit of the South East Europe.
RCC Secretary General Goran Svilanovic addressing the participants said that the Workshop was a reflection of an ongoing effort of the RCC and its partners to contribute to addressing the problem of returnees.
“The end of terrorist para-state in Syria does not mean the end of violent extremism and radicalization leading to terrorism in South East Europe. Many former foreign terrorist fighters came back to their countries of origin, still more are coming. Whether they are disillusioned or not, we have to deal with them, and to ground our responses in facts. The RCC puts a great emphasis on this line of work and in just two days from now, on Brdo pri Kranju, together with the Slovenian SEECP Chairmanship-in-Office, we will organize the second Regional Coordination Conference in the area of Counter-Terrorism, Prevention and Countering of Violent Extremism.”
The purpose of the Workshop is to evaluate the existing policies, programmes and actors as well as the challenges in relation to the role of CSOs in the rehabilitation and reintegration of returning foreign terrorist fighters, and members of their families, especially children, who followed them to/from war zones. Also, it is to analyse specific needs of the participating economies in order to develop a national program for the engagement with CSOs in the process of rehabilitation and reintegration of Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTF) and their families, the role of the gender perspective in the prevention of further radicalization and recruitment to violent extremism, effective rehabilitation and reintegration of these returnees, resulting in suggestions for development of an action plan with concrete ideas and activities that need to be conducted in the future.
The event gathers representatives of the participating governments in the field of law enforcement agencies, academia, and religious communities.