Forum on
Foreign Fighters

Policies and Actions to Address the Threat and Protect Vulnerable Communities

October 30 and 31, 2018 | The Sheraton Hotel Doha, Qatar

This multi-stakeholder event will bring together security experts, policymakers and researchers to focus on policy options and actionable solutions for governments and international institutions confronting the global threat of foreign fighters exiting theatres of conflict and attempting to return home or enter third-countries. The different types of fighters and populations affected will be deconstructed and explored.

Please check back for schedule updates and additions.

30 October

7:30 — Registration and Coffee

Welcome Remarks
Dr. Gerd Nonneman, Chair of External Relations, Georgetown University Qatar

Keynote Address
His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, State of Qatar

Opening Remarks
Dr. Hassan Rashid Al-Derham, President, Qatar University
Dr. David Scharia, Chief of Branch, Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directive (CTED)

PANEL I — Exploring the Threat: Regional Landscape and Global Terrorism Trends
This session will deconstruct the phenomenon of foreign fighters and returnees. The panel will discuss what was expected to occur versus what actually occurred since the collapse of the so-called Caliphate, especially the places to where people have returned or fled. Reviewing the numbers and types of foreign fighters and returnees, this panel will address specific regional challenges, focusing on the manner in which geopolitical rivalries, internecine conflicts, humanitarian crises, and refugee flows combine to impact terrorism dynamics.

Richard Barrett, CMG OBE, The Global Strategy Network
Dr. Fionulla Ni Aolain, United Nations Special Rapporteur Protection and Promotion of Human Rights while Countering Terrorism
Peter Bergen, CNN National Security Analyst and Vice President Global Studies & Fellows, New America
Gilles de Kerchove, EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator, European Union
Nick Rasmussen, Senior Director for Counterterrorism Programs, McCain Institute for International Leadership

10:45 — Coffee Break

PANEL II — Rhetoric and Radicalization: The Power of Narrative
This session will explore the enduring resonance of jihadi narratives and the comprehensive
efforts to counter them.

Lawrence Wright, Staff Writer, The New Yorker
Linda Robinson, Senior International & Defense Researcher, RAND Corporation
Colonel Sean Ryan, U.S. Army, Spokesman, Combined Joint Task Force-Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR)
Irfan Saeed, Director, Office of Countering Violent Extremism Bureau of Counterterrorism & Countering Violent Extremism (CT)
Dr. Tarik Yousef, Director, Brookings Doha Center

12:30 — Lunch

Workshop Session co-hosted with the United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate (CTED) and the Global Research Network
In this special workshop session, co-hosted with CTED and its Global Research Network, speakers will offer a series of short talks on regions of particular concern in the returning foreign fighter phenomenon.

15:30 — Coffee Break

PANEL III — Foreign Terrorist Organizations: Policy Tools, Designation, and Financing
This session will address the myriad ways in which state actors and international bodies can leverage the policies, financial practices, and legal tools currently available to diminish, deny and degrade the activities of terrorist organizations and the networks and individuals who support them. The challenges and opportunities of designating foreign terrorists and foreign terrorist organizations, enacting strict material support laws, and imposing sanctions to combat terrorism financing, will be explored and discussed at length. The intersection between terrorist financing and organized criminal networks, including ‘small-dollar terrorism’ and the ‘crime-terror nexus,’ will also be addressed.

Colin Clarke, Senior Research Fellow, The Soufan Center
Major General Abdul Aziz Al-Ansari, Chairman of National Counter-Terrorism Committee, State of Qatar
Jason Blazakis, Professor, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey
Dr. Daniel Byman, Vice Dean and Professor, School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
Dr. Matt Levitt, Former-Wexler Fellow & Director, Reinhard Program on Counterterrorism & Intelligence, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy

17:15 — Break

ISIS, Tomorrow. The Lost Souls of Mosul
Dinner and Film Screening, Followed by Q&A with Francesca Mannocchi

31 October

8:00 — Registration and Coffee

Fireside Chat
His Excellency Dr. Khalid bin Mohamed Al Attiyah
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Defence Affairs, State of Qatar
With Steve Clemons, Editor at Large, The Atlantic

Fireside Chat
His Excellency Panos Kammenos
Minister of National Defence, Greece
With New York Times, Pulitzer Prize Winner Charlie Savage

10:00 — Coffee Break

PANEL IV — Legal Considerations, Law Enforcement, and Societal Cohesion: Striking a Balance
This session will explore the difficult balance between ensuring accountability and justice for crimes committed and protecting the public from further acts of violence. It will also assess topics including societal cohesion, community resilience, and both the challenges and benefits of successfully reintegrating former combatants. Should these considerations be made by individual governments or by international bodies, especially in freedom-of-movement zones? Particular elements of the ‘incarceration versus rehabilitation’ debate will be discussed, including prison radicalization.

Dr. Karen J. Greenberg, Director, Center on National Security Fordham Law
Ian Acheson, FRSA, Director of National Security Programmes, Sampson Hall
Dr. Joshua A. Geltzer, Former Senior Director for Counterterrorism and Deputy Legal Advisor, National Security Council
Paul H. Haretel, Deputy Assistant Director, Counterterrorism Division Federal Bureau of Investigation
Dr. Magnus Ranstorp, Research Director, Center for Asymmetric Threat Studies Swedish Defence University

12:30 — Lunch

PANEL V — Challenges to Progress: Technology and other 21st Century Stressors
This session will address the ways in which technology has impacted both radicalization and terrorism. Different aspects of the information domain will be discussed, including communications applications, cryptocurrencies, and a variety of social media platforms.

Steve Clemons, Editor at Large, The Atlantic
Faisal Mohamed Al-Emadi, Executive Director of Programs, Silatech
Dr. Elisabeth Kendall, Senior Research Fellow in Arabic & Islamic Studies, Pembroke College, University of Oxford
Eric Rosand, Director, The Prevention Project
Dr. David Scharia, Chief of Branch, Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directive (CTED)

14:45 — Coffee Break

PANEL VI — Collaborating Across Sectors: A Whole of Society Approach to Effective Policy Development and Creative Solutions to Manage Returnee Flows of Men, Women, and Children
This session will deconstruct specific returnee populations, specifically exploring their security risk and options after they return home. Challenges in coordinating State responses and accepting returnees will be explored. The particular cases of women and children, and how State responses vary for those populations, will be addressed.

Bobby Ghosh, Journalist and Commentator, Bloomberg
Dr. Mia Bloom, Professor of Communication, Georgia State University
Fabrizio Carboni, Regional Director for the Near and Middle East International. Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
Dr. Rohan Gunaratana, Professor of Security Studies, Nanyang Technology University
Francesca Mannocchi, Journalist and Director

Closing Remarks and Looking Ahead

16:45 — Coffee Break wuth Mezze

Screening and Discussion with Lawrence Wright and Ali Soufan

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