Muslim youths to advise ministers

A group of young British Muslims are being named as advisers to ministers as part of a drive against extremism. The move comes as part of fresh plans to prevent radicalisation and address community concerns. The 22 Muslims aged 16-25 will hold regular meetings with key ministers and civil servants. Muslims called for a voice for youngsters in an official plan after the 2005 London suicide bombings which killed 52 people. The advisory group comes as the government is rethinking how to prevent violent extremism, a key element of counter-terrorism strategy. Officials have acknowledged more work needs to be done to reach out into Muslim communities. The youth advisers are similar to another initiative which has seen Muslim women directly advise ministers. In contrast, the largest Muslim umbrella body in the UK remains on the sidelines amid continuing rows with government. Dominic Casciani reports.

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Ex-extremists call for ‘Western Islam’

BBC News Discussing hardline Islamist ideologies and violent extremism isn’t exactly the stuff of fashionable London parties. But the British Museum is on Tuesday the surprising venue for theologians, thinkers and socialite Jemima Khan, all coming together to support the launch of a new think tank to counter Al Qaeda’s world-view. And this seemingly bizarre gathering exposes the question at the heart of the whirlwind romance between the Quilliam Foundation and policymakers. Is the launch of this campaigning organisation a step forward in the battle of ideas – or just another group with some kind of official pat on the head – but no credibility on the street? Since the London bombings of July 2005 a whole string of Muslim organisations have come forward, claiming to have the answers to violent extremism. Dominic Casciani reports.

Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir reaches out to Young Muslims, calls for Islamic State

{Hizb ut-Tahrir is a international Muslim organization accused of sending followers along a path toward terrorism, while its defenders claim it gives a much needed voice to desires in the Muslim community for global solidarity. Still legal but viewed with much suspicion, this article explores a secretive community that seeks to strike a balance between Islam and Western life more than its critics recognize.} By Dominic Casciani Named as a danger to young minds, but never banned in the UK – what is the message of Islamist organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir? This coming weekend the global “political party” which campaigns for a single Islamic state across the Muslim world says it will be holding one of its largest-ever conferences in Indonesia. But as a warm-up, some 2,000 British Muslims arrived at London’s Alexandra Palace to hear the message from the party’s British wing. Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT) has been accused of being a critical player in a so-called “conveyor belt” towards terrorism – that its ideas are part of the problem.