Saturday November 27, 2021

KP to set up centre for countering extremism

August 31, 2021

PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly on Monday approved legislation for establishing a research-based ‘Centre of Excellence to Counter Violent Extremism’ in the province.

The bill, presented by Special Assistant to Chief Minister on Information and Higher Education Kamran Bangash, to be called ‘Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Centre of Excellence on Countering Violence Extremism Act’ was passed unanimously to be enforced forthwith and shall be extended to the whole province.

Jamiat Ulema Islam woman MPA Naeema Kishwar criticized the bill as part of provincial government move to fulfill the condition of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). However, neither she nor any opposition member opposed the bill during its passage stage.

The bill is aimed at coping with the severe emerging issues, challenges springing from the terrorism, subversive activities against Pakistan through the narrative of hatred, extremism, radicalization, intolerance, abusing charities, funds generation for entities of concern, glorification of terrorism, terrorist organizations and also to diagnose the root causes for the matters connected therewith or ancillary thereto.

Pakistan People’s Party lawmakers Nighat Yasmin Orakzai and Ahmad Kundi supported the bill. They hoped the centre would help reduce the violent extremism, hatred and militancy in the province.

The treasury benches agreed to an amendment proposed by MPA Nighat Yasmin Orakzai that a woman lawmaker from the KP Assembly should be included in the Board of Governors chaired by the chief minister. Defending the bill, Kamran Bangash said the legislation had not been made to meet the requirements of the FATF but was one of the points recommended by National Action Plan to counter terrorism in Pakistan.

However, he added, Pakistan could not keep itself isolated from the rest of the world and the legislation was a step for promoting soft and moderate image of the country among the comity of the nations.

The tribal MPA said that 42 innocent and peace-loving people were killed by unknown assailants in North Waziristan during the current year while the law-enforcement agencies had not traced or arrested even a single person for these attacks.

He said the people of Waziristan had rendered great sacrifices for the establishment of peace in their areas but the government and security forces had failed to protect their lives and properties.