On 14th of November 2018, new approaches towards preventing violent extremism and radicalization are getting the spotlight in Erbil. This one-day event called ‘Peace Through Moderation’ will involve around 80-100 participants from across the region. It serves as a solution-driven platform to discuss refreshing and effective ways to challenge violent extremism in Iraq and Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KR-I).
The conference, supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, aims to start an open dialogue about violent extremism in this region, its roots and potential ways to prevent it. Moreover, it wants to give a stage to practical ideas, solutions and some innovative projects which recently have been implemented. Halmachu, for example, a social media campaign created by the Erbil Digital Workforce, aims to prevent violent extremism through public discussions, cultural and local influencers, and subtle shifts in perspectives. This is just one of the examples, which will be discussed during the conference as part of viable ‘soft’ solutions. More ideas such as a Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE) centre, an international centre for sharing experiences, alternative perspectives and youth leadership are going to be addressed.
‘Peace Through Moderation’ will thus combine a multicultural presence of international agents and policymakers with local actors of change, who know the ins and outs of their culture and the best ways it can be employed to spark a conversation. In fact, one potential topic of the conference is the global and local outlooks on violent extremism. International guests include UNDP, UNHCR, UNODC, International Organisation for Migration (IOM), GIZ, International Labour Organization (ILO), Moonshot CVE and consulates of countries across the region and abroad.