CST ready to help Prime Minister David Cameron beat terror

By Marcus Dysch, June 6, 2013

Government plans to tackle extremism and radicalisation have been welcomed by the Community Security Trust.

Prime Minister David Cameron chaired the first meeting of a new anti-terror taskforce, called Terfor, on Monday, and told ministers more must be done to counter extreme views in schools, charities and communities.

Mr Cameron said he wanted the taskforce to “ask serious questions” about how to stop groups which incite hatred and violence.

There will also be a focus on radicalisation on university campuses, a topic which has repeatedly vexed groups such as the Union of Jewish Students.

The government would “seek advice from different individuals and groups who can bring real expertise”, Mr Cameron said. However, he added that there would be “no knee-jerk reactions” or “immediate legislative responses”.

It is thought Jewish groups such as CST, UJS and the Board of Deputies will be called on by ministers involved in the new taskforce.

Communities Minister Baroness Warsi, Schools Minister David Laws, and Business Secretary Vince Cable are all expected to play a leading role in investigating the roots of extremism in their relevant areas.

Mark Gardner, CST communications director, said the organisation would “look to make as meaningful a contribution as possible, drawing upon many years of experience and partnerships in areas such as campus and community relations”.

Mr Cameron told the Commons on Monday that CST was “an excellent organisation”.

“I commend the work that it does to keep people in our country safe,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that since coming to power in 2010 the government had used the Prevent counter-terror strategy effectively.

“We have closed down more websites and intervened to help many more people vulnerable to radicalisation,” he said.

“Since 2011 the Home Secretary has excluded more preachers of hate from this country than ever before through our Prevent work.”

But Mr Cameron warned of the threat of Islamist groups radicalising British teenagers.

“It is as if for some young people there is a conveyor belt to radicalisation that has poisoned their minds with sick and perverted ideas. We need to dismantle this process at every stage - in schools, colleges, universities, on the internet, in our prisons – wherever it is taking place.”

Last updated: 6:45pm, June 6 2013