South and South East Asia: Criminal justice responses to violent extremism and FTFs

The UNODC's Terrorism Prevention Branch and its Regional office for South East Asia and the Pacific, in close cooperation with national partners, organized five national workshops for Indonesia, Malaysia, the Maldives and the Philippines on developing and strengthening effective national policies and legal frameworks for preventing and countering violent extremism leading to terrorism through appropriate criminal justice responses. The workshops were conducted as part of a project on strengthening the capacity of South and South East Asian countries to prevent and counter violent extremism and foreign terrorist fighters through effective criminal justice responses, generously funded by the Government of Japan

The five national workshops took place in Manila on 18-19 May 2017; Jakarta on 22-23 May 2017 and 25-26 July 2017; Male on 12-13 July 2017; and Kuala Lumpur on 27-28 July 2017. 

The workshops brought together senior national policy-makers, legislators and criminal justice officials as well as academics and representatives of civil society, including those from institutions for youth and women. The workshops provided participants with an enhanced understanding of the international framework and criminal justice standards and norms on preventing and countering violent extremism (P/CVE) leading to terrorism. Participants discussed challenges, opportunities and directions to develop and strengthen effective national criminal justice policies and legal frameworks for P/CVE leading to terrorism through appropriate criminal justice approaches within their local context. Moreover, international experts delivered presentations on national experiences and perspectives with good practices and made particular reference to challenges and lessons learned. Regional P/CVE experts led broad discussions on countering the terrorist narratives. Recommendations on a counter-narrative developmental model were given. The workshops also promoted and supported the involvement of communities and civil society actors in developing criminal justice components of P/CVE strategies.

The events concluded with a review session in which the participants compiled a list of recommendations to support the development of effective national criminal justice policies, frameworks and plans of actions on P/CVE leading to terrorism.