Leading psychiatrists have urged the government to boost public resources for youth mental health to tackle an association between depression or anxiety and sympathies with violent protest and terrorism. Edgar Jones and Kamaldeep Bhui, professors of psychiatry at King’s College London and the University of Oxford, warned that the underfunding of mental health services has left young people with PTSD, anxiety and depression susceptible to a range of poor outcomes, including radicalisation, which can culminate in violent extremism. Their call for greater focus on psychological and psychiatric services comes after last Saturday’s killing of James Furlong, Joe Ritchie-Bennett and David Wails in a Reading park. The arrested suspect, Khairi Saadallah, 25, had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and an emotionally unstable personality disorder. Bhui and Jones’s research into white British, Pakistani and Bangladeshi populations in England identified an association between depression and anxiety and holding extremist attitudes. By contrast, adherence to a religion, mosque attendance and levels of social capital did not show any association with extremism. “We need to stem the flow of potential recruits in the future, and you can only do that by properly understanding people’s lives and beliefs and what can help them flourish… Read full this story
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