OSCE awards best theatre plays on battle against violent extremism

OSCE awards best theatre plays on battle against violent extremism
Four student teams from Universities of Sarajevo, Banja Luka, and the Sarajevo School of Science and Technology went on stage, on Tuesday evening, in the country's capital, in order to perform the winning plays of the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH)'s drama contest on countering violent extremism.

The first prize was awarded to the "Dead End", which addressed religious extremism in the context of disturbed family relations as a risk for radicalisation.

"Creating this play was hard but a great pleasure for me and my colleagues. We were all equally engaged in all aspects of production, from script writing to designing costumes, even in times when we were overwhelmed with our studies", said Minela Osmanović, a pedagogy student, who performed in the play.

Arma Tanović-Branković, professor at the Sarajevo Academy of Performing Arts, who assisted the students during their preparation of the plays, said that the OSCE Mission to BiH recognised the power of theatre as a communication medium for sensitising people to current issues.

"These plays confirmed that, even an issue such as countering violent extremism, can come close to young people via theatre. All the young people who participated in this project showed commitment, creativity and work ethic and as their mentor I am very pleased with the results," said Tanović-Branković

As OSCE announced in a press release, prior to the contest, the Mission had organised two expert-led workshops in Sarajevo and Banja Luka to help prepare the students for developing a script representing their view about an individual's path to violent extremism and different types of radicalisation.

"We encouraged the students to do further research and reading before writing their script. We want the students to learn more about radicalisation to violence, hate crimes and bias motivated incidents, the psychological aspects of radicalisation, and the role of faith, religion and ideology in preventing and countering violent extremism", said Selma Zekovic, acting head of the Security Co-operation Unit of the OSCE Mission to BiH.

The contest Countering Violent Extremism Dramatic Production was supported by the United States Department of State..../IBNA

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