Monday, January 26, 2009

Fighting terrorism on-line

Politics OnLine

The YHN Foundation, a Pakistan-based NGO, has collected over 62 million signatures at a rate of 2.5 million per day in a unique grassroots effort to combat terrorism. More people have signed up with YHN than voted in the last Pakistani election.

The campaign has five key components:

1.) YHN has stationed 6000 'ambassadors' in strategic locations around Pakistan to get people to sign paper petitions;

2.) They created a portal that is drawing massive traffic and global attention with a counter showing how many have signed the petition;

3.) YHN has launched an SMS campaign to collect 'signatures' and phone numbers in support of the campaign;

4.) A special song has been written and several videos have been produced with many different version of the song being recorded by many different singers. All are available as free downloads and ring tones;

5.) YHN Developed online tools and a space for people to 'tell their stories' about terrorism and what they are doing to try and stop it. Additionally, the site's forum has 1,977 active members and is building a larger network of concerned citizens and activists every day. The Yeh Hum Naheen Facebook groups have a combined membership of over 24,000 people and is steadily growing rapidly.

The goal of the project is to send a strong message which will be heard throughout the world that the majority of Muslims and Pakistanis do not condone terrorism and those who perpetrate these acts of terrorism do not do so in the name of Islam. The petition asks Pakistanis: "Are we the ones who deprive mothers of their children? Are we the ones who deprive children of their fathers' affection? Are we the ones who are destroying our own futures?"

Founded last year, YHN strives to promote the ideas of tolerance, peace and harmony, which are the essence of the Islamic faith.

To learn more visit the YHN website and become a member of one of the Yeh Hum Naheen facebook groups.

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