WOMEN’S ALLIANCE FOR SECURITY LEADERSHIP
Preventing Extremism by Promoting Rights, Peace & Pluralism
The Women’s Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL) brings together existing women rights and peace practitioners, organizations, and networks actively engaged in preventing extremism and promoting peace, rights and pluralism, to enable their systematic and strategic collaboration.
‘Wasl’ means to ‘connect’ in Arabic, Urdu and Persian.
Our Core Values
- Nonviolence and active support of positive inclusive peace;
- Pluralism, social cohesion, equality, and non-discrimination;
- Social, political, and economic justice;
- Adherence to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;
- Transforming gendered power relations to realize equality and rights;
- Amplifying community voices and building a progressive majority;
- Building on the history and legacy of women’s activism and leadership;
- Mutual empowerment, support, and respect for others’ experiences and avoiding duplication of work.
“Women’s rights activists are the longest-standing socially-rooted, transnational groups mobilizing for peace, countering rising extremism, and providing an alternative vision for the future.”
— WASL founding statement
We cultivate vertical, horizontal and diagonal connections
- Facilitate access for national and grassroots women-led organizations to engage substantively in the international countering violent extremism (CVE) debate by collating their perspectives on critical issues (e.g. security, economics, education) and publishing policy papers. This includes information sharing and analyses from the ground to increase knowledge of the gender dimensions of violent extremism with a focus on solutions to root causes and contributions to preventative action.
- Link women’s networks, practitioners, and organizations more effectively to governmental processes, enabling them to share lessons learned and shape state and multilateral policies and programs based on ground realities and needs.
- Develop shared, conceptually-sound solutions to challenges the security-oriented approaches and narratives of existing CVE policies and programs.
- Avoid duplication of efforts and provide a means of coordination and mutual development and support based on a division of labor and core strengths among INGOs, government, and multilateral organizations.
- Provide opportunities to enable the sharing of strategies and lessons learned across countries between grassroots, national civil society actors, and regional and international activists/organizations facing similar manifestations of extremism, including “know-how” and good practices for scaling up successful and promising initiatives.
- Ensure allocation of resources to support innovative solutions locally and internationally in a range of spheres — notably practical community-based work, messaging and communications, production of knowledge, etc.
- Connect existing women-led organizations and resource persons working on extremism and promoting peace to deepen solidarity and strengthen their impact.
- Initiate country-focused public surveys and other efforts to tap into the aspirations of potentially vulnerable populations and use that data to articulate a coherent and realistic alternative vision with attention to improvements in education, justice, economic, and other human security policies.
- Include and reach out to other sectors – notably arts and culture, journalism, religious communities, the private sector, and governmental agencies to echo and amplify the voices and perspectives emerging from women’s organizations.
- Draw on each sector and organization’s unique competencies to ensure innovative mass outreach and build wider public participation in disseminating the vision, values, and messages of WASL members.
What the U.S. Must Do and Why It Matters A Policy Brief in the 2016-17 U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace and Security Policy Brief Series by Sanam Naraghi Anderlini, Rasha Jarhum, Rana Allam, and Devin Cowick. As a critical member of the coalition...read more
A Preliminary Dialogue on the Nexus of Economic Policy, Gender and Violent Extremism.
Women peace practitioners and rights activists have long been concerned by decisions made at global and national levels that at the local level impact dynamics of economic exclusion, threaten social cohesion and exacerbate vulnerabilities to radicalization
Why Civil Society and Security Sector Partnerships Matter. Analyzing the impact of security interventions in contributing to and mitigating extremist violence.read more
From Preventing Violent Extremism to Promoting Peace, Resilience, Equal Rights and Pluralism (PREP). Members of the Women’s Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL) and other women-led organizations in over 30 countries analyzed the role of formal and informal education in contributing to enabling conditions and mitigating extremist violence.read more
A gendered content analysis of nine NAPs, analyzing whether and how specific themes and target groups were discussed, including education, media, civil society, gender/ women, and human rights.read more
10 Steps Governments Can Take to Support the Critical Role of Civil Society in Preventing Violent Extremism
Evidence demonstrates that efforts by governments and multilateral actors, particularly security-focused initiatives, are not sufficient to prevent violent extremism. Governments and multilateral institutions need to work more closely with other sectors of society to...read more
تقرير: حقائقُ مقلِـقة، حِكَمٌ اســـتثنائية في التقرير الأول من سلسلة التقارير المعنية بالسياسات، يعرض التحالف النسوي للقيادة الأمنية (وَصْل) وجهة نظر المرأة حول الأبعاد الأمنية لأجندة منع ومكافحة التطرف العنيف بما في ذلك خبرات النساء الذاتية في إشراك الجهات العسكرية...read more
The first in our series on policy and practice for mitigating extremism and advancing sustainable development, this brief presents women's perspectives on four key areas: (1) security concerns for civilians and civil society organizations; (2) experiences and...read more
WASL partners participate in GSX “Preventing Violent Extremism through Civil Society Innovation” event
ICAN, in partnership with The Prevention Project, celebrated the first anniversary of the Global Solutions Exchange by hosting an all-day event on “Preventing Violent Extremism through Civil Society Innovation” on the margins of the 2017 UN General Assembly meetings.read more
As news and images of the Burmese military’s attacks on the minority Muslim Rohingya community spread around the world, partner, Bushra Qadeem Hyder, a school principal and long time educationalist in Pakistan was among the first to see the impact on the students...read more
ICAN and WASL are proud to release thematic briefs on policy and practice to inform national strategies for preventing violent extremism and promoting sustainable peace.read more
This Alert provides a summary of recent events and recommendations for immediate actions by the international community to end the violence against the Rohingya, and prevent the spread of new violence across Asia and beyond.read more