25% of Londoners experienced extremist views

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LONDON: One in four Londoners has witnessed or experienced extremist views in the last 12 months, City Hall research has revealed. A total of 61 per cent of the 2,000-plus responses also thought the threat from extremism was increasing.

Mayor Sadiq Khan used the results to call for improved efforts to divert vulnerable people away from terrorism. The Government’s deradicalisation programme Prevent has been criticised for failing to prevent incidents such as the Parsons Green Tube bomb in September 2017, in which 30 passengers were injured. Ahmed Hassan, 18, who was jailed for life for attempted murder last March for the attack, had been involved with the Prevent programme in Surrey for more than a year.

Last week the Government announced an independent review of the programme in response to concerns over its negative impact on some communities, particularly Muslims. 

Today’s research also found almost two-thirds of Londoners would not know how to obtain help if they were worried about an individual displaying extremist characteristics. Mr Khan added: “We simply must do better at stopping people from promoting these vile ideologies.”