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The Foundation IFIIE has been invited to participate in Valletta Malta, on October 23rd to 25th, together with hundreds of young people and representatives from civil society in the Euro-Mediterranean region to discuss how to overcome and move beyond the "narrative" of extremism, with the new generations on the front lines.
This was one of the main themes at the heart of the agenda for the Anna Lindh Foundation's MedForum 2016, which has brought together about 650 participants to talk about fighting violent radicalism as well as intercultural cities as "potential dialogue incubators".
Other topics include values-centered education to help prevent misunderstandings and conflicts; the Euro-Med area as an extraordinary hub for exchange and support for creative entrepreneurism that has its beginnings in civil society; and the roles that the media, women, art, and migrants can play.
"The voice of young people for fighting extremism is growing," said Elisabeth Guigou, president of the Anna Lindh Foundation, at Monday's plenary session, during which the "Young Mediterranean Voices" programme was launched.
"We don't want our countries to become isolated or Europe to become a fortress," Gigou said, announcing the Foundation's commitment to find "legal ways for youth mobility" and the extension of the Erasmus programme "to the southern Mediterranean as well".
UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova highlighted the importance of fighting extremism starting at the school desk,  especially urgent now given current conditions facing child migrants and refugees. In fact  Bokova said at least half of these children don't have the opportunity to attend school, with the risk of creating a "lost generation".
Maltese Foreign Minister George Vella said Malta can be an efficient "catalyst" in the meeting between the European and Arab worlds. He said the upcoming Maltese presidency of the Council of the EU will focus on migration with particular attention on influxes from Africa, under the pressure of dramatic environmental and developmental problems.


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