ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) Workshop On Counter Radicalisation, Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia and Japan co-chaired the ARF Workshop on Counter Radicalisation, which was held in Kuala Lumpur from 25 to 26 March 2015. 95 participants including senior officials from ARF member countries attended the workshop. SEARCCT and the ASEAN Malaysian National Secretariat (AMNS), Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Malaysia collaborated to co-organised the programme.

Datin Paduka Rashidah Ramli, Director General of SEARCCT officially opened the workshop. In her opening remarks, she stated that ISIS has defied international norms, ethics and their growing numbers show no signs of decline. Their radicalisation and recruitment methods have proven to be highly successful which serve not only to bring thousands of recruits into Syria and Iraq but more recently acts as a catalyst for localised acts of terror within the borders of our many countries. The Director General alluded that countries need to learn from each other, trust one another, share the failures and explain the success stories in countering radicalisation.

The Co-Chairs were Mr. Mohammad Azhar bin Mazlan (Malaysia) and Mr. Yoshi Kodama (Japan). The experts/speakers for the Workshop were Assoc. Prof. Kumar Ramakrishna, Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Singapore; Prof. Alex Peter Schmid, International Centre for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT), The Netherlands; Y.M. Tengku Datuk Abdul Ghafar Tengku Mohamed, Facilitator of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro; H.E. Miles Armitage, Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism, Australia; Komjen Pol Drs. Saud Usman Nasution, Badan Nasional Penanggulangan Terrorisme (BNPT),Indonesia; Datuk Mohamed Thajudeen Abdul Wahab, National Security Council, Malaysia; Assoc. Prof. Bilveer Singh, Department of Political Science, National University of Singapore; Prof. Rommel Banlaoi, Institute of Political Violence and Terrorism Research, Philippines; Supt. Mohd Zaini Bin Mohd. Akhir, Royal Malaysian Police; Mr. Tarik Gürleyen, Violence Prevention Network, Germany; Ustaz Mohamed Feisal Mohamed Feisal, Religious Rehabilitation Group (RRG), Singapore;Mr.Ahmad El-Muhamaddy, International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM); Dr. Debra Smith, Navitas College

of Public Safety (NCPS), Australia; Ms. Zora Sukabdi, Global Center of Well–Being, Indonesia; Prof. Dr. Mohamed Hatta Shaharom, Cyberjaya Medical University College, Malaysia; Ms. Elina Noor, Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS), Malaysia; Ms. Nur Azlin Mohamed Yasin, RSIS; Dr. Zahri Hj Yunos, Cybersecurity, Malaysia; Dr. Ahmad Faizal Perdaus, Medical Relief Society Malaysia (MERCY); Mr. Jeremy England, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Malaysia and Mr. Thomas Koruth Samuel, SEARCCT.

The two day programme discussed on the theoretical and conceptual framework of radicalization and de-radicalisation which focused on the evolution and analysis made on the subject; countries experience at strategic and operational level on counter radicalisation; psychological aspect of radicalisation; challenges in the rehabilitation process; law enforcement approach in dealing with Internet Radicalization; and the importance of countering the narratives of the terrorist. There was also a luncheon talk on the peacebuilding process in Mindanao, Philippines.

The Workshop brought in senior officials from ARF countries and experts in counter radicalisation to explore and discuss on this important issue. The next high level programme that will be conducted is the Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM) Symposium on Counter Radicalisation in October 2015.