An article by African Newspage titled "How CCCPA is using Islamic Shariah to prevent violent extremism in Africa" highlights the Cairo International Center’s program on Preventing Radicalization and Extremism Leading to Terrorism in Africa (PRELT) through an interview with the Center’s Director General: Ashraf Swelam.
Swelam emphasized how the program uses a preventive approach to empower local communities and provide them with alternative narratives based on the rules and ethics of war and peace in Islamic Shariah. CCCPA's training course focuses on two African countries: Nigeria and Somalia. The Boko Haram and al-Shabab insurgencies in these countries are taking advantage of existing conflicts or instigating new ones. Trainings are adapted to the local context in each country, and follows a highly interactive model, engaging each trainee to share his/her opinion and experience.
CCCPA's training starts with a conflict analysis exercise that identifies the major actors or stakeholders, and the root causes of conflict. It then draws on the practices of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his companions in Mecca, Medina and Abyssinia, showing examples of Islamic coexistence, and proving that while the Prophet and his followers suffered grievances, persecution and marginalization, they never resorted to terrorism. The training then introduces the rules and ethics of war and peace in Islam, followed by a deconstruction of the narratives adopted by terrorist organizations.
CCCPA future plans call for an advanced version of the program devoted to religious leaders and scholars in local communities across Nigeria, and Somalia, as well as broadening the application of the training to other contexts, primarily in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel and Sahara regions.