Empatiku Foundation – BNPT – UN WOMEN

“There is no handling without prevention, both are one unit”

On March 6, 2023, the Empatiku Foundation together with the National Counterterrorism Agency (BNPT) and UN Women held the launch of the book ‘Guide to Recognizing Early Warning Signs of Violent Extremism’. The event was attended by 192 participants from various layers of stakeholders, civil society organizations and academics.

The book launch event was opened by singing the Indonesia Raya song, traditional dance performances and showing a video about community-based early detection systems in building community resilience. This video provides initial highlights on community resilience as seen from the four pillars; increased knowledge and ability to detect early warning signs, case handling mechanisms, social cohesion and legal basis.

After the opening, the event continued with a talk show and discussion. There were five speakers, namely Kombes Pol Ponco Ardani (Head of counter ideology, prevention directorate Densus 88), Dwi Rubiyanti, (WGWC steering committee and director of AMAN Indonesia), Devi Briliant (Tough Mekarjaya Team), Iman Santosa (Messager of Peace) and Annisa Noor Fadilah (Jakatarub Bandung young social activist). The speakers conveyed the various challenges and the important role of society in spreading the ideology of extremism, and shared their own experiences in efforts to fight against recruitment and radicalization by radical extremist groups. At the end of the talk show, the speakers conveyed their recommendations to stakeholders, civil society organizations and the community as a whole regarding the importance of preventing intolerance from developing into an understanding of radical extremism to terrorism and holistic cooperation between all parties.

After the opening and talkshow, the event continued with a short video showing the identification of early warning signs of violent extremism and the official launch of the book ‘Guide to Recognizing Early Warning Signs of Violent Extremism’. Mira Kusumarini as the founder and director of the Empatiku Foundation and Dwi Yuliawati Faiz, Head of the UN Women Indonesia Program, expressed their gratitude to all parties who had participated in making the book. Mrs. Dwi Yuliawati also conveyed the importance of involving women in prevention efforts. The BNPT, represented by Major General Nisan Setiadi, S.E, as deputy 1, also conveyed the urgency of public awareness and the importance of this guidebook which contains the basic principles of early detection of signs of violence-based extremism while also considering the issues of children and women. Furthermore, in order to broaden the dissemination of this book, Mr. Nisan has communicated with the FKPT Depok and Banten, one of which is regarding future follow-up plans. Finally, the event ended with a closing by the committee.

About the book ‘‘A Guide to Recognizing the Early Warning Signs of Violent Extremism’

This guidebook reviews what behaviors are important to recognize as early warning signs and what follow-up handling and prevention can be carried out by not only the government and non-governmental organizations but also society in general. So far, the prevention aspect of the issue of violence-based extremism has not been widely discussed and tends to focus on handling when acts of violence occur. One problem that also arises is the aspect of community resilience and sensitivity to the growth of ideologies that lead to violent extremism. This is one of the current factual challenges. Therefore, it is hoped that this guidebook will serve as a reference for all parties, including the entire community, to recognize early warning signs, including children and women who are starting to be ‘glanced at’ by radical extremist groups to be involved in their actions. Prevention is part of treatment and vice versa. Both become one unit so it is necessary to get the attention of various parties, including the community and stakeholders.