PES discusses preventing radicalization at high level meeting


Juan Fernando Lopez Aguilar, Yonnec Polet

High level representatives of PES member parties have met in Brussels to discuss the recent terrorist attacks and develop common progressive solutions to the challenging issues of terrorism and radicalization. The participants highlighted the need for our political family to answer the citizens’ demands for security with efficient policies. The experts agreed on the vital need to strike the right balance between security measures and the respect of people’s fundamental freedoms and at the same time improve our work on tackling the root causes of terrorism.

Terrorism is a cross border threat and something which requires European cooperation to be effectively dealt with. Representatives from PES member parties underlined the necessity for Member States and law-enforcement agencies to enhance data exchanges but also the need to work towards improving prevention capabilities and develop counter-narratives to the extremists’ discourses.

Sergei Stanishev said:

The PES is determined to do its utmost to fight the phenomenon of terrorism by proposing concrete and credible solutions to citizens’ calls for security. We will continue our work in this field by having a balanced approach providing security measures respectful of the fundamental rights of our citizens.

The Progressives must be at the forefront of this. We believe that eradicating the phenomenon of terrorism can only be done by tackling its root causes, having more effective exchanges of information between national and European law-enforcement agencies and combining by security measures with efficient prevention and disengagement programmes at European, national and local levels.

Our political family must have a strong and united position on this debate and counteract the dangerous rhetoric of conservatives and populists which have used these terrorists’ attacks in trying to spread fear and instigate division and mistrust within our multicultural societies.

Participants at the PES High Level Working Group on Justice and Home Affairs agreed to meet in the fall and deepen their work on these fundamental issues.