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The power of sports

The Power of Sport to Prevent Violent Extremism


Online Roundtable Discussion to Commemorate the International Day for the Prevention of Violent Extremism as and when Conducive to Terrorism



WHAT: Commemorating the first International Day for the Prevention of Violent Extremism as and when Conducive to Terrorism, the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT)-led Global Sports Programme is hosting a virtual 90-minute Roundtable on the power of sport to prevent violent extremism (PVE).  Professional athletes, Civil Society Organizations, youth leaders and representatives from international organizations, sport federations and member states will engage in an interactive conversation on the role of sports in fostering resilience to violent extremism and hate narratives.

WHEN: Monday, 13 February 2023, 8:00 am EST (2 pm Madrid; 8 pm Bangkok)

WHO: UNOCT in partnership with the UN Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI), the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS), and Generation Amazing Foundation. Participants include:             

  • Khalida Popal, Professional Football Player, Founder and Director of Girl Power Organization
  • Isabella Echeverri, Professional Football Player and Save the Dream Ambassador
  • Samantha Johnson, Al Jazeera Sports Anchor
  • Nasser Al Khori, Executive Director, Generation Amazing Foundation
  • John Youhanes Magok, Nile Youth Development Actions
  • Pok Leaksmy, Advisor to the Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports
  • Jessica Hutting, Programme Manager, Kampus Diakoneia Modern Foundation
  • Dr. Decius Chipande, Head of the African Union Sports Council
  • Masereka Wilber, Integrated Community Development Initiative
  • Nana Osei-Darkwa, Management Board Member, Rural Soccer Ghana
  • Dr. Kwaku Ofosu-Asare, Executive Chair, 13th African Games in Accra, Ghana 2023

WHERE: Online - Broadcast live on UN WebTV at:          



Sport has long played a significant role in spreading positive values throughout the world and across civilizations and cultures, particularly among youth. As such, sport is a powerful vector for preventing violent extremism (PVE) at the global, regional, national and sub-national levels, as well as for promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. The UN Global Programme on the Security Major Sporting Events, and Promotion of Sport and Its Values as a Tool to Prevent Violent Extremism (“Global Sports Programme”) provides technical assistance to member states on how to incorporate sport values-based PVE initiatives in national strategies for preventing violent extremism. It also supports grassroot Civil Society Organizations in implementing community-level sport-for-PVE projects and engages with youth to ensure that their unique skills and perspectives on PVE through sport are considered by policymakers.

Building on the Global Sports Programme’s  #MoreThanAGame campaign, the roundtable will broaden conversations on how sport can positively influence lives across borders, generations, and communities. Participants will exchange views on sport-based PVE policymaking and activities, grassroots Sports-for-Development (S4D) tools and the role of athletes and sporting events in creating peaceful, inclusive and prosperous societies.

In its resolution 77/243, the General Assembly declared 12 February the International Day for the Prevention of Violent Extremism as and when Conducive to Terrorism, in order to raise awareness of the threats linked to violent extremism, as and when conducive to terrorism, and to enhance international cooperation in this regard.

The UNOCT Global Sports Programme is made possible thanks to the generous contributions and support provided by the People’s Republic of China through the United Nations Peace and Development Fund (UNPDF); the State of Qatar and the Republic of Korea.

For further information, please contact:, UNOCT Public Information Officer