Tamara Zamyatina, tass.ru
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Effective resistance to recruiters from the terrorist organization calling itself the Islamic State (outlawed in Russia; also known under its Arabic name DAESH) is coming to the forefront of efforts to maintain Russia’s national security. This task will require pooling efforts by civil society institutions and religious organizations, polled analysts told TASS.
The chairperson of the public diplomacy and compatriots support commission at Russia’s Civic Chamber, Yelena Sutormina, has told TASS that on-going joint efforts by her organization and the Muslim Board of Moscow and the Central Region of Russia were to bring about a common Muslim Public Front for Resistance to DAESH.
"Regrettably, one has to admit that the measures to resist radical Islamist recruiters both civil society and religious organizations have been taking are mostly belated. According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, about two Russian citizens are already fighting for the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. The overall number of IS militants of CIS descent may reach 7,000. Stemming the flow of new recruits is the most important task in protecting the country’s national security," Sutormina said.
Since August 1, 2015 the Civic Chamber has operated a hot line for the relatives and friends of young people who have fallen under the influence of Islamic State recruiters. Everybody is free to share hyperlinks to terrorist websites outlawed in Russia.
"We teach the parents and friends of potential IS victims how to explain the distortions of the Quran and persuade young people not to listen to DAESH preachers. For this purpose the Civic Chamber, with support from the CIS Anti-Terrorist Centre has issued a booklet entitled ‘The Horror Story of the IS’. We distribute crucial methodological recommendations among the students of secondary and higher educational establishments in Russia and other CIS countries," Sutormina said.
In her opinion, such awareness promotion activities in educational establishments is particularly timely, because there have been alarming reports terrorists may try to recruit young scientists to make chemical weapons and also to train suicide bombers.
Sutormina said one of the main tasks of the newly-founded Common Muslim Public Front for Resistance to DAESH was to train Muslim priests at Russia’s educational establishments, and not in Arab countries, where Islamic State preachers have a strong foothold.
The brain-father of the common Muslim Public Front for Resistance to DAESH, Mufti Albir Krganov, of Moscow and the Central Region of Russia, said that within the new organization experts in various fields will carry out anti-recruitment measures. Among other things, they will teach believers to separate pseudo-Islamic values from the traditional, real ones.
Muri Krganov said the Islamic State had a whole movie industry and billions of dollars working for it. Improvised make-shift sporadic efforts will never succeed in confrontation with this propaganda flow. "The escalation of the Islamic State relies on an ideology that young people who have gone astray find very attractive. IS leaders have posted 732 video clips in the world web. IS recruiters are brainwashing young people around the world, including Russia. Our new organization which I have agreed to lead is determined to unite the Russian intellectual community: historians, psychoanalysts, experts on oriental affairs, IT specialists and theologians. We are to fight fire with fire. There must be created a powerful counter-ideology exposing pseudo-religious values," Mufti Krganov told TASS.
The movement will proceed along three main lines of activity: comprehensive monitoring of the situation at Russian institutions of higher learning and other educational establishments, pre-emptive contacts with youth via the Internet and social networks and awareness promotion campaigns by scholars and clerics with the parishioners by various means, including the world web.
"The new organization — a socio-religious alliance confronting the ideology of radical Islamism - has already met with support from the presidential staff and both houses of the Russian parliament," Mufti Krganov said.