The Communities and Local Government Select Committee stated that ‘the current breadth of focus of Prevent — from community work to crime prevention — sits uncomfortably within a counter-terrorism strategy’ (2010, p. 3). The Committee’s report implies that there is uneasiness between the traditional counter terrorism aspects of CONTEST and Prevent. This chapter examines these conflicts and tensions in more detail. Many of the issues dealt with in this and the following chapters are interrelated and presented from three different perspectives, namely the national policy level, the local professional delivery, and out of the perspective of the local community. This, the first of the three chapters, focuses on the national level, and is based on the experiences, opinions, and perceptions of 15 interviewees, which include national policymakers, politicians, civil servants, senior police officers, and human rights and anti-racism activists, all of whom are involved in Prevent work nationally (see Appendix for more information about the participants).
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