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MERIT Project | ICCT | No. 28 | 22 November 2019

From 28 to 30 October 2019, a training on the Development of Counter Discourse and Alternative Narratives gathered young leaders coming from various regions in Mali. Through theoretical and practical sessions, it aimed at providing participants with the necessary skills and tools to develop alternative narratives to counter violent extremist propaganda and ideology. Following this workshop, many participants took the initiative to spread within their local communities the valuable knowledge and skills acquired in October. Using the framework of MERIT-trainings as well as different media platforms, young leaders were able to reach out to a wider audience. ICCT and UNICRI warmly welcomed these youth-led initiatives which demonstrate the participants’ commitment to promote peace and build community resilience against violent extremism.
As part of its efforts to enhance youth empowerment and engagement to promote alternatives to violence, the MERIT team has also developed a mentoring programme for Malian youth. This mentorship, which will run from December 2019 to August 2020, aims at connecting a selection of young leaders engaged in peacebuilding with respected individuals from the national and international community willing to share their experience and to provide career recommendations as well as personalised advice. Their first meeting will enable pairs to share about their respective backgrounds, to identify each mentee’s objectives for this mentoring programme as well as a specific activity to be organised to achieve these goals. The overall objective is to enable young leaders to develop their professional skills, thereby allowing them to play a leadership role in their local communities and to participate in public debate.


  • U.S. imposes sanctions on leader of Mali Islamist militant group.
  • Mali police rescue 64 trafficking victims in a mission coordinated with Interpol.
  • Worst violence in seven years breaks out in Mali.
  • France prepares new military mission to support local security forces in Mali.
  • EU to increase presence and support for Sahel partners fighting terrorism.
  • JNIM claims prison break in Mali.
  • Mali army says 24 soldiers and 17 militants killed in attacks on northern patrol.
  • World Vision releases October Central and Northern Mali Emergency Response Situation Report.
  • UNICEF publishes Mali Humanitarian Situation Report.
  • USAID relases Mali Complex Emergency Fact Sheet #2, Fiscal Year (FY) 2019.
Since August 2019, the International Center for Counter-Terrorism - The Hague has been running the Mali (Dis-) Engagement and Re-Integration related to Terrorism project, or the MERIT project. The MERIT project is a multi-year project, spearheaded by ICCT and the United Nations Interregional Crime Research Institute (UNICRI) and funded by the Royal Danish Embassy in Bamako. This project is part of a broader effort to prevent and counter violent extremism in Mali, and aims to facilitate the rehabilitation and reintegration of released Violent Extremist Offenders (VEOs) and reduce the risk of radicalisation among Malian youth.This newsflash will be sent every two weeks, including an update on the project, relevant news from Mali and other articles or reports related to the project.  
Copyright © 2019 International Centre for Counter-Terrorism - The Hague, All rights reserved.

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