Skip to main content


Volume 503: debated on Monday 11 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions he has had with (a) the Council of Europe and (b) the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on measures to tackle extremism; and if he will make a statement. (301465)

The UK is an active, founding member of the Council of Europe, which is a standard setter on democracy, human rights and the rule of law. We are fully engaged in Council of Europe work on the fight against extremism and terrorism.

The UK Government are clear that any form of violent extremism is unacceptable. The Government deplore all attacks, whatever their motivation which are engineered by any extremist group. A key element of CONTEST, the Government's strategy for countering international terrorism, is “Prevent”—that is to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting violent extremism. To do this we need to prevent people supporting violent extremism and the ideology that fuels terrorism. Part of our Prevent work is to challenge those who support violence. But we also want to actively promote the shared values (including democracy and the rule of law) on which our society and the cohesion of our communities depend. We aim to do this by working in partnership with communities to challenge the ideology of violent extremism and disrupt those who promote it. The Government aim to empower all communities to reject violent extremism. We are also working with police forces, local authorities, schools and universities, and local communities to protect vulnerable individuals from radicalisation.