Last month, CAIR-Chicago Executive Director Ahmed Rehab presented at an international academic conference in Bangkok, Thailand. The five day conference titled, “Addressing the New Landscape of Terrorism addressed issues of radicalization,” focused on exploring government and community efforts, media treatment, public perception, as well as socioeconomic and psychological factors related to terrorism globally. The conference was organized by Deakin University of Australia and co-sponsored by the US, Belgium, France, and Australia and attended by those nations’ respective ambassadors to Thailand, as well as Thai officials and other international activists and community leaders.
Ahmed worked with the conference organizers to ensure that the topic addressed the gamut of terrorism and extremism to include White Supremacist ideological groups as well as ISIS type groups. Ahmed’s presentation focused on the concept of “Jihad,” explaining what this important aspect of Islam really means to the consensus mainstream of the Muslim world, how it is practiced by them on a daily basis, and how it has been usurped by deviant fringe groups, as well as what can be done moving forward. The presentation was well received by the invitation-only audience of academics and officials.
Working groups were created to ensure that the best practices tips gleaned from the conference have an impact on academic and political circles. The annual conference will hold its third installment next year in Morocco.