Sri Lanka’s State Defence Minister calls for collective effort to address online radicalization of youth

State Minister of Defence Premitha Bandara Tennakoon

Sri Lanka’s State Minister of Defence Premitha Bandara Tennakoon says Online youth radicalization in the South Asian region is a complex challenge that demands urgent attention.

Minister further says, “Through fostering education, collaboration, socio-economic development and leveraging technology responsibly, we can empower our youth to resist extremist narratives and pave the way for a more peaceful and harmonious future in the region.”

State Minister of Defence Premitha Bandara Tennakoon made these remarks while gracing as the Chief Guest of a Youth De-Radicalization Workshop organized by Search for Common Ground with Meta (Facebook), Skype, Twitter and Messenger, at the Kingsbury Hotel in Colombo, yesterday (December 07).

Delving deep into the subject, the State Minister noted “Youth radicalization doesn’t occur in a vacuum. It’s often born out of a complex interplay of socio-economic disparities, political instability, marginalization and a lack of education or opportunities and addressing radicalization requires a multifaceted approach – one that goes beyond mere security measures”.

“Social media has evolved as a social nation and exerts enormous influence around the world. Today due to the online platforms, there is only a fine line between freedom of expression and social security and communication service providers have a great responsibility in appropriate use of safety tools and measures”, he further said.

Representatives of Tech Industry and civil society organizations were present at the occasion.

(Ministry of Defence)