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Fri 16/07/10 18:02

Dear all,

Please find attached this week’s News Summary. The weekly summary is intended to provide background
information to topical news stories and issues that may resonate in communities. The weekly summary also
includes links to interesting news articles that people may wish to circulate further.

This week’s summary includes coverage of:


 The Prevent review
 The attack by an Afghan soldier on UK personnel in Afghanistan
 The French National Assembly vote in favour of a burqa ban
 Kampala bombings

We encourage you to share this unrestricted document with your contacts.

As ever, we would appreciate your feedback on the format, content, and timing of this document, as well as
suggestions on issues you would like it to cover.

Kind regards,

Laura

Laura Dobson

Communications Adviser
RICU (Research, Information and Communications Unit)
Office for Security and Counter Terrorism
Home Office, 2 Marsham Street, London, SW1P 4DF

Tel: 0207 035 0478

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with comments or if you would like to subscribe
Weekly News Summary
Friday 16th July 2010
Key Issues
Guardian article claims Prevent programme to be ‘dismantled’
The Guardian claimed on Wednesday that the Government’s preventing violent extremism
programme is to be dismantled. The article followed publication of the Home Office Structural Reform
Plan, which set out priorities for the Department. The plan outlines the Home Office commitment to
review Prevent, and clearly separate it from wider community cohesion and integration work.
Key points
Prevent reflects the recognition that we cannot arrest our way out of terrorism or indeed
protect ourselves to the point where the threat disappears. We also need to address the threat
by stopping people supporting violent extremism or becoming terrorists in the first place.
This is not a substitute for having to investigate and arrest people who are engaged in terrorist
activity – it is a vital addition to it. The police will continue to take action against those who
defend or advocate the use of violence to further their causes.
The Government believes the Prevent programme isn’t working as effectively as it could and
that is why it has committed to reviewing it.
The review will look at, among other things:
 separating the Prevent strategy from wider community cohesion and integration work;
 how Prevent objectives are prioritised and how they are delivered locally.
The Government will report back on the findings of the review by January 2011.
Associated articles: The Guardian - Ministers dismantle £60m programme to prevent violent extremism

Afghan soldier attacks UK personnel in Afghanistan


There has been significant media coverage following an attack by an Afghan soldier on a patrol base
in Helmand Province, which resulted in the deaths of three British soldiers.
Prime Minister David Cameron said:
“The trust between the Afghan National Army and British Army units and other NATO units is very
strong and working well. This is not typical of the Afghan Army, this is a rogue element and the
insurgents want us to change our approach. They want us to abandon our strategy. They want us
to lose faith in the Afghan National Army.

“That would not be the right approach. It is a dreadful incident. We need to get to the bottom of
what happened. We need a proper investigation. I discussed that with President Karzai this
morning.

“The right thing for us to do is to keep with our strategy of working with and building up the Afghan
National Army because in the end it’s when the Afghans can take care of their own security, can
keep Al Qa’ida out of their country, can make sure there’s a basic level of security and stability. It’s
when that happens we will be able to bring our troops home.”
Key points
An incident has occurred in the Nahr-e-Saraj (South) area of Helmand Province, Afghanistan
involving an attack within a Patrol Base by a member of the Afghan National Army (ANA)
using a combination of weapons. The incident resulted in the death of three UK personnel.
These were the actions of a known Afghan soldier. His whereabouts are currently unknown
but all efforts are being made to find him. Early indications are that this appears to be a pre-
meditated attack. His motivation remains unclear.

A joint investigation has been launched by the Afghan authorities


and ISAF. The investigation will cover all angles of the incident and
Please email ricu@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk
with comments or if you would like to subscribe
any lessons will be identified.
Building effective Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) is an essential part of the strategy
to create a stable Afghanistan able to maintain its own security and prevent Al Qa’ida from
returning.
The ANA is making considerable progress and is becoming increasingly capable. A large
proportion of patrols are joint with the ANA and are conducted successfully. ANSF already
successfully lead on security in areas such as Kabul.
The UK Government has always recognised the risks inherent within partnering, and has
worked hard to reduce these to a minimum. But the Government is clear that the benefits of
partnering outweigh the risks; it offers the quickest and most effective route of delivering the
campaign objectives.
The Government believes that partnering the ANSF is essential for the future of Afghanistan
and the security of the UK.
Associated articles: BBC News - Three British servicemen killed by Afghan soldier

French National Assembly passes burqa ban law


MPs in the French National Assembly have voted in favour of banning the burqa and niqab in public.
However, the ban could yet be deemed unconstitutional by France’s Constitutional Council. Belgium
and Spain are also considering similar bans.
Key points
The Government believes that an arbitrary ban on what citizens can wear in the street would
be an attack on British freedoms. Such laws have no place in the UK.
Associated articles: The Telegraph - French MPs vote in favour of banning burqa

Bombings in Uganda kill football fans


The Foreign Secretary has condemned the bombings which killed at least 74 football fans watching
the World Cup final in Kampala on Sunday. The Al Qa’ida-allied Somali group Al Shabaab have
claimed responsibility for the attacks.
Foreign Secretary William Hague said:
"I was deeply shocked to hear of the bomb attacks that took place in Kampala last night, which left
many people dead and injured. I send my heartfelt sympathies to President Museveni and the
people of Uganda, in particular the families and friends of those who lost their lives, and wish a full
and speedy recovery to those who were injured.
“These were cowardly attacks during an event that was widely seen as a celebration of
African unity, and I condemn them in the strongest possible terms. The UK will stand with Uganda
in fighting such brutal acts of violence and terror."
Key points
The UK condemns unreservedly international terrorism in all its forms and wherever it
manifests itself.
The UK is a close friend to Uganda. The UK is providing assistance to Uganda's police
service with their investigations, and stands ready to do more as needed.
Associated articles: The Independent – Six suspects held in hunt for Uganda bombers

Other News Stories from this Week


The following are interesting news items that we think people may want to circulate further:
The Telegraph - Civil liberties drive by Coalition Government sees review of key CT legislation
The Home Secretary announced on Tuesday that a rapid review of key counter-terrorism and security
powers is underway. Please see RICU’s factsheet issued on Tuesday for further details.
Evening Standard - Pakistan vs Australia Test Match at Lords
Pakistan’s test matches are being played in the UK because of the security situation in Pakistan, with
Lords hosting its first neutral Test since 1912.

Please email ricu@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk


with comments or if you would like to subscribe