The State of Qatar has reiterated its commitment to a comprehensive approach to preventing violent extremism in Somalia and other hot spots in the world by being guided by innovative methods and relying on modern technology.
This came in the statement delivered by the Permanent Representative of the State of Qatar to the United Nations
H E Ambassador Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani. She spoke at an event on the sidelines of the second United Nations Counter-Terrorism Week entitled “facing the new and evolving challenges in the new decade: through rehabilitation and reintegration in Somalia”, organised by the State of Qatar in partnership with the Federal Government of Somalia and the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund.
The Ambassador explained that Qatar provides support to the Global Fund because its mission is in line with its comprehensive approach to preventing and combating violent extremism and terrorism, and its firm belief in the inevitability of addressing violent extremism from its roots, as the Global Fund has been performing valuable work in many beneficiary countries, including Somalia.
Qatar has several international initiatives aimed at building peaceful, just, and inclusive societies and promoting stability and equity at the political, social, and economic levels, she added.
She explained that Qatar aims to promote a culture of peace and tolerance through education and sports. It is keen to improve economic conditions by providing job opportunities and development assistance, noting that Qatar focuses on communities in need and those living in dispute situations or those emerging from them.
H E Sheikha Alya stressed that Qatar has always been a reliable international partner for Somalia, as it provides it with political and other forms of support, including military aid, to strengthen the security sector and improve its ability to confront persistent threats and terrorism. She underlined Qatar’s realisation that addressing violence and terrorism and adopting security approaches are not sufficient alone. Therefore, Qatari aid to Somalia is focused on the people and directed towards providing development assistance and investing in vital areas such as education and providing job opportunities to help Somalia restore stability and prosperity.
She noted that creating job opportunities is an effective tool to reduce violence and is essential for facilitating the separation and rehabilitation of youth previously associated with violent extremist groups. This rehabilitation is followed by a long-term process of reintegrating them into society, indicating the process requires adequate funding and the active involvement of traditional and religious leaders and local NGOs; while the role of these local actors is essential, international partners can also assist.
Sheikha Alya highlighted the role of Silatech, a Qatari non-governmental organization concerned with social development and works to connect youth with jobs and empower successful projects in many countries of the region. She said the organisation is working with partners in Somalia to promote economic integration and peaceful coexistence. It is also implementing programmes to provide thousands of young refugees, displaced, and returnees with sustainable livelihood opportunities through vocational training, small business skills development, agricultural and fishing skills, and the employment of graduates.
She announced that within the framework of partnership with the Qatar Fund for Development, a capital fund was established to finance projects and create job opportunities for thousands of Somali youth.