Netherlands: Mosques to participate in anti-radicalization program

Netherlands: Mosques to participate in anti-radicalization program

The administrators of 18 mosque in the Noord-Holland province will go on a study-week in April, dealing with how to better attract youth to the mosque's social activities. This would prevent young Muslims from ending up isolated and than radicalizing.

The special training is one of the first activities in the action plan: "Prevention is better than a cure" of the ACB knowledge center, the Council of Moroccan Mosques of Noord-Holland and the Union of Moroccan Muslim Organizations in the Netherlands, project leader Roemer van Oordt said on Sunday. The plans aims to prevent the polarization between various groups and the radicalization of Muslim youth.

According to the initiators, youth don't get radical ideas in the mosque, but rather from outside it, for example, on the internet. If they would be more involved in the mosque, they could get more guidance and that would prevent them from getting isolated. Thereby young Muslims would not turn as fast against society and radicalize.

During the study week the participants will learn how they could reinforce the social function of the mosque and make it more accessible for youth. They would also acquire skills in recognizing and dealing with radicalization. They would also hear how they could collaborate with other parties who deal with youth, such as social welfare institutions, neighborhood organizations or the police.

Ten of the mosques participating in the program are in Amsterdam, the rest are from other places in the Noord-Holland province. As part of the action plan, a political debate would be organized in a mosque during the Amsterdam municipal elections.

Source: Telegraaf (Dutch)

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