Government measures improve the prevention of religious radicalism in Kazakhstan
Measures taken by the Government in 2017 have significantly strengthened the prevention of religious radicalism in Kazakhstan. This was reported by Minister of Religious Affairs and Civil Society Nurlan Yermekbayev during the briefing at the Government press center.
Nurlan Yermekbayev reported that in the course of 2017, the Ministry has taken a comprehensive set of practical measures. Thus, a set of legislative changes was developed, the ideological basis of which is the The Concept of State Policy in Religious Matters for 2017-2020.
The Concept provides for the strengthening of control over religious propaganda and expands state functions for monitoring the activities of religious associations. At the same time, the State continues its non-intervention policy regarding canonical and religious issues.
Within the framework of interdepartmental work, steps are being taken to counter destructive religious movements by means of ideology and information. The Government has created a special Interdepartmental Commission, which only deals with religious issues. This interaction has resulted in the strengthening of the security around religious facilities, and in the establishment of constant monitoring of channels for the distribution of religious materials.
The CyberShield project is being implemented since August 1 with the aid of the Prosecutor General’s Office and the Ministry of Information and Communication. A special resource was created within its framework – kibernadzor.kz. In addition to monitoring websites, books and printed products are also examined. In cooperation with the Ministry of Internal Affairs, a special service was organized for the rehabilitation of those convicted for religious extremism.
In addition, the system for outreach work was modernized, and is now organized under the coordination of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and Civil Society. The composition of the special theological and information groups was reformatted and expanded by means of theologians, activists, experts of NGOs, the media and religious associations.
Since the beginning of the year, they have held over 17000 events covering more than 1.8 million people. Particular attention is paid to the work with young people. During this period, 700 000 young people participated in more than 6000 events organized for them.
A design approach for the work with risk groups has also been worked out. The main partner of the Ministry in this direction is the Akniet rehabilitation center, which works with detention facilities. Employees of the center work with people convicted for religious extremism and with members of their families.
To help the victims of destructive sects, a network of consultation centers has been established. 24 NGOs became the Ministry’s partners in this project. In difficult regions, not only consultation centers operate, but full-fledged psychological rehabilitation services.
The population has very positively responded to the Hot Line 114 project. In 2016, it received more than 500 calls from citizens. This project allows advising citizens and to promptly respond to tips about violations. In general, on the basis of multilateral partnership, the situation in the sphere of religion is monitored. As a result, the influence of destructive religious ideas is gradually decreasing.
Source: Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan