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ASPI/KAS The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on extremism dynamics: Towards national resilience

By Katja Theodorakis and Leanne Close

The Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) and the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung’s (KAS) Regional Programme Australia and the Pacific held their annual Australia–Europe Counter Terrorism Dialogue in virtual form this year. This publication provides an overview of the issues discussed at the 5th Dialogue in Europe in 2019, and the two events held in Australia and virtually with European experts, in August and September.    

The annual ASPI–KAS Counter-Terrorism Dialogue, now in its sixth iteration, seeks to foster knowledge exchange on continuing and emerging forms of terrorism and violent extremism across the ideological spectrum, exploring how to proactively deal with an ever-evolving threat landscape. Keynote speakers were live-streamed from Europe joining a selected group of Australian experts and representatives of the European diplomatic corps. A tried and proven format, it brings together policymakers, representatives from relevant government institutions, academic experts and practitioners from Australia, Germany and other European countries for frank discussions.

Security in our countries relies on peace, civility and collaboration within and beyond our own borders. The propagation of hate speech and disinformation is being creatively used by terrorists and conspiracy theorists, as is the current global pandemic. This report focuses on the theme of the 2020 dialogues - building national resilience, including consideration of the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on the dynamics of violent extremism and terrorism.

Last years ASPI-KAS dialogue report is available here.