Central Asia is a region of concern for violent extremist activity. The region is vulnerable to threats from individuals and groups seeking to destabilize it through the radicalization and recruitment of individuals to join terrorist causes, to carry out terrorist acts, and/or to travel to foreign jurisdictions to commit terrorist acts.

The challenges of how to effectively prevent and counter violent extremism and the incitement and recruitment of individuals to commit acts of terrorism has led to increased international focus on these issues, as well as to the need for countries to develop and implement more preventive, holistic strategies and approaches to counter these threats.

In this context, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), with the collaboration of the Academy of Law Enforcement Agencies under the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Republic of Kazakhstan, has built a PVE Network for experts in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. The PVE Network applies a “whole of society” and “whole of government” approach, linking government representatives, civil society groups, academia, international experts, and the UNODC to build the region’s resilience and cooperation.

The PVE Network for Central Asia functions as a comprehensive framework for parties to share research, evidence, and data to assess and respond to drivers of radicalization, and to understand current approaches and good practices for preventing crimes associated with the radicalization, incitement, and recruitment of individuals for terrorist purposes. Further, the Network aims to enhance awareness and willingness to embrace the important role of women, youth, and victims of terrorism. Under the Network, UNODC has undertaken a series of activities including training, dialogue, and interaction to strengthen the region against terrorism and violent extremism, in a manner consistent with the rule of law and human rights.

This initiative was made possible with the generous support of the Government of Japan.

UNODC is a global leader in the field of terrorism prevention. Established in 1997 through a merger between the United Nations Drug Control Programme and the Centre for International Crime Prevention, UNODC operates in all regions of the world through an extensive network of field offices.

The Academy of Law Enforcement Agencies under the Prosecutor General’s Office of Kazakhstan established in 2015 is dedicated to improving professional development of the law enforcement officers, coordinating inter-agency research in the law enforcement area as well as providing postgraduate programmes. Academy is also implementing a project on the Regional Hub on countering global threats which is aimed to serve as an innovative platform for the exchange of experience, joint education and promoting dialogue among participating law enforcement agencies including in countering extremism and terrorism.