Press release on the international practical and research conference on the priority tasks of international cooperation in countering extremism and terrorism

Wednesday, 04 April 2018 10:30

The Foreign Ministry and the Ministry of the Interior held an international practical and research conference on the priority tasks of international cooperation in countering extremism and terrorism at the Ministry of Interior’s Vladimir Kikot Moscow University. The conference was initiated by the Interdepartmental Commission on Countering Extremism in the Russian Federation.

The conference was opened by Minister of the Interior Vladimir Kolokoltsev, Deputy Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov and Head of Kikot Moscow University Igor Kalinichenko.

Opening remarks were also made by Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Office Vladimir Voronkov, Director of the Federal Financial Monitoring Service Yury Chikhanchin, Head of the Federal Service for the Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media Alexander Zharov, member of the Federal Assembly Federation Council Committee on Defence and Security Frants Klintsevich, Deputy Minister of Education and Science Irina Potekhina and Head of the CIS Anti-Terrorist Centre Andrey Novikov.

The conference was attended by experts from the relevant Russian agencies, major academic institutions, representatives of public and religious associations, and also heads and employees of counter-terrorist units from key international organisations – the UN, the SCO, the CSTO, the CIS, the OSCE and the Council of Europe as well as a number of states (China, Iran, Serbia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan).

Successful Russian legal and practical experience in countering extremism and terrorism was presented in detail at the first plenary meeting. Russian representatives focused on efficient functioning of the state system for countering and preventing terrorism and extremism. They convincingly demonstrated how the potential of domestic civil society is actively joining these comprehensive efforts in all areas. This primarily applies to traditional religious communities and their leaders, Russian NGOs, the media, the scientific community and education institutions.

Employees of related agencies, public figures and experts described in detail Russia’s practice of neutralising terrorist and extremist activities on the internet and social media and suggested ways to improve this work and giving it an international dimension.

Deputy Head of News at RT International Alexey Kuznetsov emphasised that it is unacceptable to provide any information support for the crimes of terrorist groups. He quoted a number of instances when Western official agencies and the media directly connived at the provocative and disinformation activities of the pseudo-humanitarian organisation White Helmets that is cooperating with terrorists in Syria.

During the conference, the Russian participants promoted the initiative of “counter-terrorist restrictions for the media and officials” that implies consistent and effective abstention (self-censorship) of the media, politicians and other public figures from creating or stirring up a media report that could provoke the radicalisation of the attitudes of some groups or individuals, thereby leading to extremism and terrorism. They quoted by way of example Russia’s successful experience in this area – the elaboration of the Anti-Terrorist Convention of the Rules of Conduct for the Mass Media in Case of a Terrorist Act and an Anti-Terrorist Operation that was adopted by the Russian media in 2003.

During the second plenary meeting the participants discussed in detail priority tasks of international anti-extremist and anti-terrorist cooperation based on Russian reports and information provided by invited foreign guests. Following the conference the organisers will prepare recommendations for promotion at major international venues.

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