In 2015, approximately 120 countries were affected by violent extremism to some degree. In most instances, non-state entities are the key instigators, perpetrating random attacks and spreading the violence geographically. But government actions have exacerbated these conditions. Instead of protecting and nurturing spaces for dialogue and constructive dissent, certain governments are increasing their repression of civil society. Civil society is the space in which most women leaders – committed to peace, social justice and progressive values – are active. Yet they are under pressure to conform to state policies or fall silent for fear of retribution from extremist groups.
In collaboration with our partners, ICAN supports these women civil society leaders through advocacy, training, dialogue facilitation, and information generation, sharing, and exchange.
“A strong, independent civil society is critical in the fight against extremism and essential for the promotion of rights, peace, democracy and human security.”
We work in these major areas, explore them further here