Kenya is willing and ready to share its Building Bridges Initiative with the world in the fight against extremism, President Uhuru Kenyatta has said at UN General Assembly.
“Our Building Bridges Initiative is a bold bipartisan approach that is organically forged to foundation reforms that will guarantee our unity as a nation. Beyond the political arena, the BBI sets the stage for building bridges between individuals, genders, communities and regions,” Uhuru said in New York.
“I believe this offers a unique opportunity to build successful counter-extremism and counterterrorism initiatives,” the President added.
He was speaking during a dialogue with the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and other leaders on counter-terrorism, where he restated Kenya’s support for the Christchurch Call, a global initiative spearheaded by France and New Zealand aimed at stopping the use of internet to propagate violent extremism and terrorism.
He said the world is experiencing an unprecedented trust deficit that has led to the widening of social and political divisions along ethnic, racial and religious lines
These divisions, President Kenyatta, said are threatening societal cohesion and tolerance, values that are critical to co-existence and democratic progress.
“We must engage the hard work of building bridges to close these cleavages and squeeze out extremism,” Uhuru said.
“Without this, we give extremists an opportunity to drive their message, through the appropriation of technology, more efficiently and discreetly,” he added.
The President said the opportunity for Kenya to share its building bridges experience with the rest of the world was partly the reason why it had put forward its bid for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council.
“This is also why we have put our candidature for the UN Security Council in 2021-2022. We are keen to build bridges between the various peace and security structures, regions, and forge interface between peace, security and development,” President Kenyatta said.
Kenya is relying on a 10-point agenda to campaign for the UNSC seat.
They are building bridges, peacekeeping and support operations, regional peace and security, counterterrorism, women peace and security, youth empowerment, humanitarian action, justice, human rights and democracy and environment and climate change.