Sri Lanka’s Defence Ministry Secretary says that the best way to combat extremism is to ensure income equality, education and justice.
Retired General Shantha Kottegoda said the growth of non-state actors in posing a threat to peaceful societies is “alarming”
“We are now dealing with terrorist groups who have a global reach far beyond our borders and a mix of lone militants inspired by ideologies,” he said delivering opening remarks at the Colombo Defence Seminar in Colombo today 29 Aug.
Kottegoda stressed to prevent the recruitment of young people to these there has to be gender equity, youth engagement and skills development.
He urged countries around the world to cooperate to help keep “our peace-loving communities safe and able to develop economically.”
He warned that “terrorism can aggravate poverty and inequality.”
Countries need to cooperate to shut down safe havens and share intelligence.
He observed that in there is a rise in religious extremism in the Indian Ocean region. “in many cases they have exploited the divisions among us which were created by our Colonial masters.”
He added as an island in the Indian Ocean Sri Lanka is very concerned about developments in the region.
“The Indian Ocean has many sea lanes linking nations carrying out commerce and receiving energy resources,” he added.