Baroness Warsi calls for Prevent to be paused

Baroness Sayeeda Warsi

Ex Conservative Minister Sayeeda Warsi has said that the Prevent counter-terrorism strategy should be paused.

Speaking to the BBC yesterday, she said that Prevent, which is widely viewed by Muslims as a spying and monitoring exercise on their community, should be subject to an independent review.

She said: “There is a lobby out there which absolutely trashes Prevent and says we don’t need it, there’s another lobby out there which says it is absolutely perfect. I think the reality is somewhere in between.

“I think Prevent in its current firm has huge problems. I think it’s broken, I think the brand is toxic. I think there are question marks about the training, the trainers, the quality of training within schools, about how it is being implemented.”

She also called for a “Prevent-lite” strategy to be implemented which had the trust of the communities it was trying to engage.

However, also speaking to the BBC, Home Secretary Amber Rudd rejected the call for a pause, citing the Westminster attack as a reason for reinforcing the strategy to prevent people becoming radicalised.

She added: “I do recognise what Baroness Warsi said about needing to make more of an effort to sell it to communities. We need to to better there to show that this is a safeguarding initiative, it’s about protecting young people.”

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