“They show their victory, we have to show their defeat’ Mehdi Jomaa tells BBC about ISIS

Talking from Brussels in the margins of the kick-off meeting of the CdM and the European Commission funded new initiative ‘Leaders telling a different story’, aimed at building a new alternative message to counter ISIS’ and other violent extremism groups’ propaganda, Mehdi Jomaa stressed the need to build a new narrative against violence: “We are facing this extremism with security, which is necessary, but we need as well to counter the core ideology, we need to speak the language of the people to make our speech understood” said Prime Minister Jomaa. “Until now, our speech was intellectual, and they have easy messages that are easy to digest”, he added.

Jomaa also stressed the need to focus on young people and communities: ‘We have to touch young people, we have to involve them and use simple language’. The Club de Madrid Member advocated for a positive narrative that emphasizes the positive experience of those who have resisted the threat of violent groups, as it is happening now in Tunisia: ‘The state resisted, we are stopping this phenomena. They did not succeed to shake and destroy the state, this amazing people of Tunisia resisted. We have inspiring people in Tunisia who were able to set up a Constitution, a Democracy’. 

In this sense, the former Prime Minister and crucial figure in the region calls for a bigger cooperation “between south and north, east and west as we need a global answer” for the global threat of violent extremism.