College of Arts and Sciences

Student Presents Thesis Findings at Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs Roundtable

April 5, 2021

The roundtable aims to share and discuss the practices and policies different countries are undertaking to fight violent extremism. 


Mariam Zaal Al-Hemeiri, a student completing her MA in International and Civil Security, presented her preliminary thesis findings at the 4th Dialogue on Countering Violent Extremism in the Middle East. 


The dialogue was organized by Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and included experts from different sectors, including universities, security agencies, government organizations, and private companies, most of whom are working in combating terrorism and extremism in their countries. 


Mariam’s presentation during the dialogue.


Mariam was selected to represent the UAE, while the rest of the speakers were from Japan and other Middle Eastern countries. The theme of the roundtable focused on three topics: de-radicalization of terrorists and other practical issues, political Islam and extremism, and the role of women. The dialogue’s objective is to share knowledge on the practices and policies set in place by different countries to combat violent extremism. 


Mariam’s research focuses on the operation of the UAE’s machinery of government in relation to countering terrorism, extremism, and subversion. A key early finding of her research is that the machinery is highly sophisticated and complex and that while there are few government entities whose sole responsibility is countering terrorism, extremism, and subversion, there are many more that have supporting roles. This requires a high level of intergovernmental coordination, and the coordination needs to be both between federal agencies as well as between federal and local agencies. 


Dr. Athol Yates, Acting Program Chair for the Institute of International and Civil Security, is Mariam’s supervisor. “Mariam’s work is groundbreaking as it identifies for the first time all of the institutions at the UAE at the Federal and emirate level which together fight terrorism, extremism, and subversion. What it reveals is a multi-faceted approach involving a large number of entities that range from the Ministry of Interior’s special forces to the Central Bank’s financial intelligence unit which supports the work to combat the financing of terrorism.”


Ara Maj Cruz
Creative Writer
5 April 2021