Extremism (Religious)

December 17, 2021

Religious Radicalisation and Violent Islamist Extremism in Albania, Macedonia and Kosovo

This article aims to present an analysis of internal and external factors that have contributed to the development of the phenomenon: the economic, social and ideological aspects, and the areas most affected by this issue.
December 17, 2021

Country Profile: Albania

This Country Profile provides a brief overview of religious diversity and its governance in the above-named state.
December 17, 2021

A Genealogy of Radical Islam

A genealogy of the radical ideas that underline al-Qaeda’s justification for violence shows that the development of jihadi thought over the past several decades is characterized by the erosion of critical constraints used to limit warfare and violence in classical Islam.
December 17, 2021

Countering Radicalisation in America

The challenges European authorities have had to face are similar to those their U.S. counterparts are expected to confront, and several lessons are at hand from the European experience.
December 17, 2021

Belgian and Dutch Converts Joining the Islamic State

This Research Note sketched a more complex picture of converts joining IS than the one presented by the media.
December 17, 2021

A Review of the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ Selection of Muslim Religious Services Providers

This report describes the Office of the Inspector General’s (OIG) review of the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ (BOP) policies and procedures for the selection of individuals who provide Islamic religious services to federal inmates.
December 16, 2021

Religious Tolerance in Albania

The present study finds that the foundations of religious tolerance in Albania are deeply rooted in the societal traditions and culture rather than from religious awareness, knowledge or practice.
December 16, 2021

Country Report: Bosnia and Herzegovina

This Country Report offers a detailed assessment of religious diversity and violent religious radicalisation in the above-named state. It is part of a series covering 23 countries (listed below) on four continents. More basic information about religious affiliation and state-religion relations in these states is available in our Country Profiles series. This report was produced by GREASE, an EU-funded research project investigating religious diversity, secularism and religiously inspired radicalisation.
December 16, 2021

Radicalization in Prisons? Field Research in 25 Spanish Prisons

This article has two principal objectives: (1) to study the behavioral dimensions of Muslim prisoners which predict their Islamist radicalism and (2) to study whether the behavior manifested by them is higher in prisons with a greater concentration of Muslims and a higher presence of prisoners convicted for Islamist terrorism than in prisons with fewer Muslims and no convicted Islamist terrorists.
December 16, 2021

Extremism Research Forum: Macedonia

The report thematically presents the levels, forms, and threats of extremism in Macedonia by outlining the definitional variances between violent and non-violent extremism, the waves of Islamist extremism, the phenomenon of foreign fighters, and burgeoning nationalist extremism and its political undertones.
December 16, 2021

Stakeholders of (De)- Radicalisation in Serbia

This report aims to depict and analyze the context of radicalisation in Republic of Serbia in the period from 2000 to 2021 as a part of the Work Package “Mapping Stakeholders and Situations of Radicalisation” of the D.Rad project. It puts emphasis on the most important acts of violence that indicate current and future trends of radicalisation and de-radicalisation; provides insight into how the political elite and general public perceive extremism, radicalisation and violent threats; and maps out the agents and channels of radicalisation and de-radicalisation
December 16, 2021

“Electronic Jihad”: The Internet as al-Qaeda’s Catalyst for Global Terror

This study will examine the evolving doctrine of ‘Electronic Jihad and its impact on the radicalization of Muslims in Western diaspora communities
December 16, 2021

Radicalisation in the West: The Homegrown Threat

The aim of this report is to assist policymakers and law enforcement officials, both in Washington and throughout the country, by providing a thorough understanding of the kind of threat we face domestically. It also seeks to contribute to the debate among intelligence and law enforcement agencies on how best to counter this emerging threat by better understanding what constitutes the radicalization process.
December 16, 2021

Western Balkans Foreign Fighters and Homegrown Jihadis: Trends and Implications

Over 1,000 adult male foreign fighters, women, and minors from the Western Balkans spent time in Syria and Iraq and around 500 from the region are still there, including children born in theater. After seven years of fighting and at least 260 combat deaths, the last active jihadi unit from the Western Balkans in Syria and Iraq is a modest ethnic Albanian combat unit fighting with Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham in Idlib.
December 16, 2021

The Concept of Radicalisation as a Source of Confusion

The proposed solution is to abandon the attempt to use ‘‘radicalization’’ as an absolute concept.
December 16, 2021

Radicalisation of Young Adults in the Balkan States:

The findings of this review suggest that approaches to deradicalisation should consider the importance of building communities through improved links between state-security, health, education and social care.
December 16, 2021

Rehabilitation Work with Convicted Offenders Outside of Prison

This paper builds on lessons learned in the EU context, and it is useful for first-line practitioners providing probation and community sanctions and measures (CSMs) services, as well as exit workers and community.
December 16, 2021

Islamist Extremism: A Practical Introduction

This factbook provides an overview of the fundamental elements of violent Islamist extremism to enable recognition of its symbols, vocabulary, recruitment tactics and narratives used in various settings, including online, in our schools, local communities, or prisons. There are multiple manifestations of violent Islamist extremism across the EU. Because of the national and local variations, it is impossible to provide an all-including in-depth study of the phenomenon. This factbook focuses specifically on Salafi-jihadism.
December 15, 2021

Common P/CVE Challenges in the Western Balkans and European Union

This ex post paper summarises the recommendations and best practices drawn from the meeting. This document is intended for policymakers and practitioners who want to better understand the needs and goals of others and who wish to improve mutual cooperation at all levels. The exchange of best practices from the Western Balkan and EU countries could better prepare both regions to tackle any threats and challenges they may face.
December 15, 2021

Social Identity Theory for Investigating Islamic Extremism in the Diaspora

This paper attempts to contribute to the discussion on the role of identity in radicalization by using social identity theory. In doing so, the article explores the formation and transformation process of social identities, and argues that the nature of communitylevel groups and networks may contribute to identity ‘readiness’ for radicalization
December 15, 2021

R2PRIS: Methodological Framework

This report was developed by the partnership of R2PRIS Radicalisation Prevention in Prisons (2015-1-PT01-KA204-013062) project with the aim of presenting its first deliverable: the R2PRIS Methodological Framework.
December 15, 2021

Issues of Radicalisation and Violent Extremism in Macedonia

The primary objective of this report is to examine the extent to which radicalisation and violent extremism is related to the practice of Islam. That said, the report does not qualify this type of extremism as the main security challenge in Macedonia due to the presence of other forms of extremism, such as nationalism. As the findings of the report will explain, religious extremism is often juxtaposed with nationalism.
December 14, 2021

Islamophobia and Xenophobia in Slovenia

Our research, therefore, attempts to first identify Islamophobia and xenophobia through theoretical discourse as the fear of the "other" − that is, the fear towards Muslims (Islamophobia) or towards the foreigners (xenophobia)
December 14, 2021

Signs of Islamist Radicalisation and Extremism in a Country without a Single Terrorist Attack: The Case of Slovenia

The article identifies and studies instances of the transit of foreign Islamists, their finances and arms, provides examples of local foreign fighters and their return, identifies NGOs with radical agendas and attempts at recruitment, as well as threats made to local authorities, training under the cover of a social event, the deportation of extremists, and a foiled terrorist attack. Most of these indicators are linked to Jihadi and Islamist sources of power based in Bosnia.
December 14, 2021

Home Grown Terrorism and Islamist Radicalisation in Europe

An assessment of the factors influencing violent Islamist extremism and suggestions for counter radicalisation measures.
December 14, 2021

Violent Extremism: Definition and Terminology

This guide is an effort by the Kosovo Center for Security Studies (KCSS) to address, in cooperation with Kosovo media, the absence of a compendium of the terminology and practices, in order to properly respond to the need for more accurate and substantive surveys and reporting on the phenomenon of violent extremism in Kosovo. This guide is a product of KCCS’s research and of the longstanding experience of its researchers on recognizing and studying violent extremism and its origin in Kosovo, compiled with the support of the US Department of State and the US Embassy in Kosovo and through broad consultations with Kosovo media news desks, editors, journalists and local reporters from municipalities and the capital.
December 14, 2021

New Threats of Violent Extremism in Kosovo

Yet, despite Government’s willingness to take ownership of the issue, with no reintegration program in place and a public largely unwilling to welcome the foreign fighters back, their return and the continued radicalization on the ground are poised to become Kosovo’s greatest national security threat to date.
December 14, 2021

Trends of Radicalisation Bosnia and Herzegovina

This report will examine the trends of radicalization in Bosnia and Herzegovina using two hotspots as that represent the manifestations of radicalization in currant Bosnia and Herzegovin
December 14, 2021

Stakeholders of (De)- Radicalisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina

This report examines the main radicalisation and de-radicalisation processes in Bosnia and Herzegovina, including main influences of certain individuals, institutions and groups who influencing these processes. It will also discuss types of radicalism that has been recorded in Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2001 and what are the main drivers of radicalism in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
December 14, 2021

National Approches to Extremism: KOSOVO

First signs of radical and extremist views in Kosovo were identified shortly after the war in 1999. Security agencies that were monitoring such individuals saw their numbers rising in the following years. Through a slow and long-term process, inflammatory imams exploited the existing grievances of Kosovo citizens to proselytise Salafi/Wahhabi forms of radical Islam.
December 14, 2021

Rethinking Radicalisation

This report explores how the unsubstantiated “religious conveyor belt” theory has influenced our response to radicalization among American Muslims and the consequences that have ensued. Since much of the government’s response to radicalization is driven by perceptions of the risk of homegrown terrorist attacks, the report begins by demonstrating the differences of opinion between the Intelligence Community and law enforcement agencies regarding this threat.
December 13, 2021

The Moral Questions on the Religious Basis for Terrorism

Having gone this far, we can conclude by saying that every claim for a religious sanctioned terrorism is a faulty one. This is as a result of our understanding of what many mainstream religions preach. Many Islamic, Christian, Hindus etc scholars have so far presented us with the image of religion that preaches peace, justice, etc.
December 13, 2021

Preventing Radicalisation: A Systematic Review

The ICPC study involves three key components that assist in preventing radicalization: pluralist and harmonious social integration, greater emphasis on more refined, non-combative debate, and diversified discourse that is truly inclusive.
December 13, 2021

Strategy and Tactics in Countering the Storyline of Global Jihad

Here we argue that counter-narratives must be tailored to different audiences and must be designed to attack particular mechanisms of radicalisation
December 13, 2021

Religious Radicalism and Violent Extremism In Albania

This study has collected, generated, and analyzed data on the phenomenon of religious radicalization and violent extremism with the aim of informing policymaking and stakeholders involved in addressing this phenomenon and the challenges interrelated with it. The research methodology approaches the identification and comprehensive analysis of the context by employing a variety of sources to understand the extent and relevance of several factors that enable or fuel religious radicalization and forms of violent extremism.
December 13, 2021

Violent Extremism in The Western Balkans: Literature Review

This review will be also of interest to the international donor community who would be interested in funding research projects on violent extremism in the Western Balkans. This review aims to also map out new avenues of research, and it does so by identifying gaps that remain in current literature, as well as some shortcomings in existing research.
December 13, 2021

The Latent Dangers Of Islamist Extremism In the Western Balkans

The risks of terrorist attacks by Islamist extremists in Kosovo and the countries of the EU still seem to be limited. However, if the political and social crisis escalates in Kosovo and the conflict in the Middle East is exacerbated, which could also lead to a polarization of the public’s attitudes toward Islam, the danger of terrorist attacks by Islamist extremist can’t be ruled out any more in both to Kosovo and the EU countries.
December 13, 2021

Cultural Drivers of Radicalisation: Kosovo

This report examines the use of media objects by the proponents of the Islamic State in Kosovo to trigger radicalization in the country by weaving in past political social grievances of discrimination and underrepresentation and evoking deep-seated traumas caused by the 1998-1999 war in Kosovo to conjure up a rallying cry of defiance to secular authorities and to the democratic order.
December 13, 2021

The Islamic Narrative in Kosovo

Given the potency of the IS propaganda to catalyze the radicalization process and its role in inspiring individuals to commit themselves to violent extremism, KCSS compiled this report with the aim to identify, deconstruct, analyze, contextualize and interpret the IS propaganda targeting Kosovo Albanians as well as to reveal the tools employed to spread this narrative among different audiences in Kosovo. In Kosovo’s case, this report finds that the narrative, while laced with religious language and injected with Koranic verses, in essence speaks to local issues. It seeks to utilize local disgruntlement, past grievances as well as events pertaining to the 1998-1999 to mobilize its supporters in Kosovo.
December 13, 2021

Structural Quality Standards for Work to Intervene and Counter Violent Extremism

With this handbook the Counter Extremism Network Coordination Unit (KPEBW) in the Ministry for Interior Affairs, Digitalisation and Integration of the state of Baden-Württemberg in cooperation with the German Institute on Radicalization and De-Radicalization Studies (GIRDS) would like to present a recommendation for 5 minimum structural standards both to an audience of counter-extremism actors and to other state coordination units or policymaker.
December 13, 2021

Assessment of Violent Extremism in Serbia

This assessment dealt with the root causes and drivers of VE in Serbia. It identified four different types of extremism: a) religiously-motivated extremism, including foreign fighters in the Middle East; b) ideologically-motivated (right-wing) extremism, which included Serbian nationals traveling to fight for the pro-Russian side in Ukraine; c) ethnically-motivated extremism; and d) hooliganism. All four types recognized in this research are rooted, directly or indirectly, in the context cited above. We will here summarize all underlying factors and drivers shared by these seemingly distinct types of extremism.
December 13, 2021

Citizens Perceptions on the New Threats of Violent Extremism In Kosovo

This report consists of data analysis on perceptions regarding threat of violent extremism and trust towards stakeholders involved in prevention of this phenomena. It is divided in three main sessions: the first focuses on general perceptions about violent extremism and other forms of extremism such as: ethnically motivated violence, political violence and religiously motivated violence; the second outlines the perceptions towards risks and threats of returned fighters, and community willingness to accept former fighters and women/minors; the last session focuses on the perceptions towards stakeholders involved in implementation of the CVE strategy.
December 13, 2021

Overview of research on far right extremism in the Western Balkans

Far-right extremism is widespread in the Western Balkans and exists in both mainstream political parties and extremist groups and individuals. Most of the literature focuses on Serbian nationalist groups, but far-right groups are also present in Bosnia Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo, Albania and North Macedonia.
December 13, 2021

National Approaches to Extremism : BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) is a multi-ethnic country with a population of 3.5 million split along religious lines. The main Abrahamic religions are present in BiH and are the foundation for ethnic divisions in the country: Bosniak Muslims, Catholic Croats, Orthodox Christian Serbs, and a minority presence of Jews. It became independent from Yugoslavia.
December 13, 2021

National Approaches to Extremism : NORTH MACEDONIA

The Republic of North Macedonia has at least two characteristics that its citizens share: a complex ethnic structure and a strategically important geopolitical location in the Balkans. Most recently, as of 2017 and the formation of the new political government, the country reached two significant bilateral benchmarks: the Greco-Macedonian Prespa Agreement (17 June 2018) and the 2017 Treaty on Friendship, Good Neighbourliness and Cooperation with Bulgaria. This turn of events marks an important milestone in the Macedonian EU integration process.
December 10, 2021

Violent Radicalisation & Far-Right Extremism In Europe

While this report does not comprehensively cover all the potential topics related to the radicalisation of far-right violent extremism in Europe, it provides a beginning step to enhance the available research on the subject and generate some specific examples and recommendations for policy and programme responses
December 10, 2021

Vulnerability and Resilience to Violent Extremism in Kosovo

By focusing on the legacy of two distinct communities in the last six years since the appearance of violent extremism in Kosovo and the trajectory of their conduct over this period, this study seeks to shed light on the central role that formal and informal structures embedded in the communities have in preventing and countering radicalisation and violent extremism
December 10, 2021

Countering the Myths of IS: How to Counter The IS Narrative Online

Based on a comprehensive analysis of the threats of extremist groups in social media, our research addresses three main narratives: (I) political narratives (ideological and against state institutions) (II) religious narratives (III) gender roles narratives. The report studies the Albanianlanguage propaganda purported by IS in a bid to target audiences in Kosovo, Albania and Macedonia, all three countries where Albanian is an official language.
December 10, 2021

Women in Violent Extremism

Historically, women have been victims to a much greater degree than perprators of violence. The situation is gradually changing in the context of globalization and new security challenges. Recently, we have been witnessing an increase of women involvement in violent extremist organisations including participation in foreign conflicts. These organisations – often united around a common political or religious ideology – represents one of the many emerging complex threats to international peace and security. In order to create an effective response to this problem, it is initially important to depict why women increasingly join violent extremists organizations and what is their role within the groups. Research and experience to date have shown that women can enable, support, be victims of, counteract and prevent violent extremism. Their roles and experiences are not monochromatic but rather diverse and shaped by context, community and history.1 Women, albeit portrayed as passive agents, have been participating in recent terrorist organizations more frequently and in many different ways. Women have been participating in terrorist organizations as caretakers and care providers, they have been promoting violent extremist ideologies and have been recruiting other women to join violent extremist groups. Furthermore, there are sources implying that in some cases women have taken up weapons and are fighting in the ground.2 The purpose of this research is to shed light on the women from Kosovo who participate in violent extremists organizations and potential consequences deriving from their role. While the report will be solely focused on Kosovo, it will bring international knowledge in treating this phenomenon having in mind that Kosovo marks no general exception when compared to other countries. The goal is to particularly identify who these women are, why would they participate in these conflicts, and what is their role.
December 10, 2021

Political radicalisation on the Internet

Then we focused on radicalization to action by examining two cases where we know in some detail how Internet content contributed to moving individuals to active jihad.
HOPE RADICALISATION NETWORK