Between 19th and 23rd July 2009, Quilliam held a five-day national conference in partnership with Bargad for student leaders from variant political parties across Pakistan. The conference provided an ideal platform to discuss peaceful alternatives to conflict resolution and the promotion of democratic values within student politics and wider Pakistani society.

During the course of the event, Quilliam Co-Director Ed Husain gave a presentation on the history and evolution of Islamist movements. This was followed by a student debate chaired by Maajid Nawaz in which two groups of students debated the motion ‘Does the primary responsibility in countering extremism lie with Pakistanis?’ A lively debate ensued between students of different political and religious leanings.

Centrally, the main outcome of the event was the identification of the need to greatly improve communication and interaction between youth across Pakistan. It stressed the importance of dialogue and peaceful debate in the resolution of potentially contentious issues within student politics.