Tories pledge to establish Commission for Countering Extremism if they win election

Theresa May

The Conservative Party has pledged to establish a “Commission for Countering Extremism” to identify examples of extremism and expose them.

The pledge was included in the Conservative Party manifesto which was launched in Halifax today ahead of the general election on June 8.

The manifesto says: “Our enjoyment of Britain’s diversity must not prevent us from confronting the menace of extremism. Extremism, especially Islamist extremism, strips some British people, especially  women, of the freedoms they should enjoy, undermines the cohesion of our society and can fuel violence.

“To defeat extremism, we need to learn from how civil society and the state took on racism in the twentieth century. We will consider what new criminal offences might need to be created, and what new aggravated offences might need to be established, to defeat the extremists.

“We will support the public sector and civil society in identifying extremists, countering their messages and promoting pluralistic, British values. And we will establish a Commission for Countering Extremism to identify examples of extremism and expose them, to support the public sector and civil society, and help the government to identify policies to defeat extremism and promote pluralistic values.”

The Conservatives have been heavily criticised by Muslim organisations for focusing almost exclusively on “Islamist ideology” as the cause of radicalisation, while ignoring foreign policy grievances, Islamophobia and disenfranchisement.

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