13 February 2016

Secretary-General’s press encounter at the Centre for Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence

Q: Are you impressed by Montreal’s role to counter radicalization?

Secretary-General: Of course, I am very much happy to be here.

[In French] I am very happy to be here with the honourable Mayor [Denis] Coderre – [I commend] his leadership and his work with the United Nations and [support for] our efforts to stop radicalization.

[In English] As you are well aware, we are living in a world of peril because of the spread of radicalization, terrorism and violent extremism. The United Nations takes highest priority to work with Member States, including Canada, [to see] how we can stop this flow of extremism, terrorism, [and] radicalization. We have to address the root causes and I am very much happy to visit this centre to prevent radicalization from spreading all throughout the world. I hope that the Canadian Government and [other] Member States of the United Nations will work with unity of purpose to address this issue.

First of all, we have to ensure that we have good governance by the world leaders. We have to address reasons why people are being driven to such extremism and radicalization – I think there are many, many reasons. Recently, last month I had presented the United Nations Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism. I had presented 70 or more recommendations, which can be used by the Member States.

I hope that with experience and the lessons that are learned from this centre we can do much better – effective and coherent. One of the important points that I would like to emphasize at this time in addressing or countering, preventing extremism and radicalization, is that we should place the highest priority in protecting and promoting human rights.

We agree that we should mobilize all legitimate resources in countering terrorism and extremism but at the same time, human rights and human dignity should be placed on top.

Thank you very much.