Governments around the world are uniting in trying to defeat terrorist movements. In this context, recent counter terrorism laws in the UK place public duties on all citizens to help prevent terrorism. Yet, the science of predicting rare events such as terrorist offending yields consistently poor results. There are ethical, clinical and scientific dilemmas facing the professions if we are to investigate social, religious and political belief systems in routine assessment in order to inform judgements about terrorist offending risk. A balanced and evidence-based approach is necessary.
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