About the Series
The webinar series aims to identify a conceptual understanding and appreciation of the importance of rehabilitation and aftercare efforts in countering violent extremism. Driven by empirical evidence and case studies, the webinar series also intends to provide an overview on terrorist and extremist rehabilitation and deradicalisation efforts as well as the latest trends and developments in the landscape.
Comprehensive counterterrorism policies, which include kinetic and non-kinetic measures, are key to combat violent extremism. In this regard, terrorist rehabilitation programmes are an essential element in most national counterterrorism campaigns as governments and the community at large seek ways in which the extremist and terrorist threat can be effectively and sustainably contained or eliminated, beyond the incarceration of radicals.
In this webinar, Prof Andrew Silke, Dr Omar Ashour and Dr Feisal Hassan will analyse the growing significance of rehabilitation in counter-terrorism and provide their perspectives on the desired and practical results of rehabilitation programmes. In their capacity as Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) specialists and practitioners, they will highlight case studies of deradicalisation and disengagement approaches to extremist rehabilitation, as well as provide an overview of the developments related to and challenges of rehabilitation.
Professor Andrew Silke holds a Chair in Terrorism, Risk and Resilience at Cranfield University. He has a background in forensic psychology and criminology and has worked both in academia and for government. He is internationally recognised as a leading expert on terrorism and low intensity conflict, with his primary research interests being terrorism, conflict, crime and policing. He has a wide range of publications including several books, with his most recent being The Routledge Handbook on Terrorism and Counterterrorism (2019) and Historical Perspectives on Organised Crime and Terrorism (2018). Prof Silke is a member of the European Commission’s Radicalisation Awareness Network Centre of Excellence (RAN CoE) which works with practitioners to develop state-of-the-art knowledge to prevent and counter radicalisation to violent extremism. He has provided briefings on terrorism-related issues to Select Committees of the UK House of Commons and is a member of the Cabinet Office National Risk Assessment Behavioural Science Expert Group.
Dr Omar Ashour is an Associate Professor of Security Studies in the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies. He is the Founding Director of the Critical Security Studies Graduate Program (MCSS) and the director of the Strategic Studies Unit in the Arab Centre for Research and Policy Studies. His primary research interests include political, security and military developments in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe and other regions. Dr Ashour’s published works have covered the Arab World, the Post-Soviet Caucasus and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Western and Southern Europe. His scholarly publications have appeared in various peer-reviewed journals and he is also a regular contributor to global media outlets. He is the author of The De-Radicalization of Jihadists: Transforming Armed Islamist Movements (Routledge, 2009). Dr Ashour’s most recent published titles are How ISIS Fights: Military Tactics in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Egypt (Edinburgh University Press, 2021) and Bullets to Ballots: Collective De-Radicalisation of Armed Movements (Edinburgh University Press, 2021).
Dr Mohamed Feisal Mohamed Hassan is a Research Fellow at the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR). His research interests include terrorist rehabilitation, counter-ideology and community engagement. He has spoken on these issues in various countries and conducted field research on rehabilitation in Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and others. He is secretary and counselor of Singapore’s Religious Rehabilitation Group (RRG), a voluntary entity that counsels extremists. Dr Feisal graduated from the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) with an Honours Degree in Philosophy. He holds an MA in Islamic Thought from the International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilization (ISTAC), IIUM and a Msc in International Relations from RSIS, NTU. He attained his PhD from the University of Melbourne, Australia with a thesis entitled “Contextualising wasaṭiyyah from the perspective of the leaders of the Malay/Muslim community in Singapore today”.