Egypt’s Al-Azhar Observatory for Countering Extremism received on Tuesday Gilles de Kerchove, the European Union’s counterterrorism coordinator, to review the latest efforts to combat terrorism and extremism.
Tarek Shaaban, the General Coordinator of Al-Azhar Observatory, discussed the efforts of the Observatory and the work mechanisms of its various units.
Shaaban said that the Observatory's approach is based on monitoring, translating and analysing reports issued by terrorist groups in foreign languages, as well as monitoring reports issued by research centres studying extremism.
The EU counterterrorism coordinator praised the role of Al-Azhar Observatory in confronting extremist ideologies and the importance of its mission in exposing the falsity of extremist groups' ideologies, stressing the necessity of intensifying cooperation between the Observatory and entitled authorities in Europe to combat terrorism and combining international efforts in this regard.
In 2015, Al-Azhar institution created the Al-Azhar Observatory to respond to erroneous and extremist interpretations of Islam, especially those which promote violence. The Observatory’s website produces content in 10 different languages.
Egypt’s Al-Azhar institution is considered the world’s oldest institute of Sunni Islamic learning.