In close co-operation with International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program (ICITAP), the Mission co-hosted the workshop “Strong Cities Countering Violent Extremism in Kosovo” on 6-7 March in Pejë/Peć. Participants included 45 representatives of religious groups, civil society, local and central level officials, and police; who are all working to strengthening resilience in municipalities and contribute to the implementation of legal framework in preventing violent extremism. In addition, attending were also the representatives of nine Kosovo municipalities that recently became members of the Strong Cities Network, which is the first global network of mayors and municipal-level policy makers, united in efforts to counter violent extremism in all its forms.
During discussions, special attention was given to further strengthening of the referral mechanism in Gjilan/Gnjilane as a pilot project, its co-operation with existing local safety forums, as well as to the prospect of creating new referral mechanisms. Further support towards local level in relation to prevention of violent extremism, de-radicalization process and re-integration was also emphasised during the workshop, which concluded with final agreed recommendations for local and central level.