APWAPS Searches New Strategies to Combat Violent Extremism
APWAPS joins the commencement of 6th Action Asia Peace Building Forum that is taking place in Jakarta, 16-18 October 2017. With the theme “Preventing Violent Extremism: A Peace Building Perspective”, the forum expects to open spaces for dialogues of multiple parties from diverse backgrounds working on the matter.
For many women working for peace in the Asia Pacific region, rising violent extremism is a continuation of unresolved conflicts, which have been endured for generations. Studies show that conflicts in our region are twice as long as conflicts worldwide, lasting more than three decades (Parks et.al., 2013). In APWAPS’ initial discussion on the issue of violent extremism, held in conjunction to the 3rd Asia Pacific Feminist forum this September in Chiang Mai, resentment for the state’s failure to respond adequately to the root causes and impacts of conflict is fertile ground for violent extremism. Fundamentalist ideologies have taken over the narrative in many conflict-affected and divided communities in the region.
In the Chiang Mai discussion facilitated by APWAPS, Asia Pacific feminists felt the urgency of understanding the new trends associated with rising violent extremism, particularly in relation to its transnational political and economic dimensions, its dominance in social media, the challenges faced by women’s movements in addressing it. Several issues were raised in Chiang Mai, such as the need to reinvestigate our strategies of incorporating feminist vision in our peace building works, re-examine our understanding of family and strategies of engagement, revisit our strategies in working with youth and the community, revalue self wellbeing-ness, and rethink our effort to build new alliances.
Hence, during this action peace builders forum, APWAPS will hold a session to continue the initial discussion in order to bring more lessons learned and reflection from more diverse experiences from different contexts. The session seeks to better our understanding on rising violent extremism and make the connections with women’s long-standing experiences with efforts for conflict transformation and just peace. Also, to provide inputs for our future strategies in dealing with the situation.
This session will be held on Wednesday, 18th October, 2017, at 11.00 – 12.30, with Kamala Chandrakirana (APWAPS), Bondita Archaya (WinG-India), and Belle Gracia Hernandez (Balay Mindanaw FOundation Inc- Philippines) and Shanti Uprety (IWRAW-AP).