Britain’s security services have stepped up their monitoring of social media platforms in order to gain intelligence on British jihadists in Syria and Iraq, according to the Times. Outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and others play host to wannabe terrorists discussing plans to go to the two countries in order to join Islamic State of Iraq and al Sham (ISIS).
Advice on these sites is extensive and ranges from simple things like travelling light, to money exchanges and the need for visas to enter certain countries. Many militants are remarkably open on public websites, so they can help newer recruits get into conflict areas.
They are told to bring a smartphone for web access, but are told to leave Islamic books behind as this can make it difficult to get through airports. One British jihadist, who uses the alias Abu Abdullah al-Britani, posts regularly on sites like Ask.fm to help British nationals who want to join the conflict.
He recently took to social media to say: “U dnt need much, u get wages here, u get food provided and place to stay”. Another, Abu Rashash Britani tweeted to another jihadist: “I my brother intend to go back to UK under the order of our Ameer Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi #foreignpolicy”.
At this week’s Prime Minister’s question time, David Cameron confirmed the government’s view that around 400 British nationals had travelled to fight for ISIS. The government remains concerned that there may be more people in Britain who are contemplating getting involved.
The Home Office has used a range of powers including travel bans and withdrawal of passports to stop militants travelling, and security services are being extra vigilant of people travelling to Turkey as it has a land border with Syria.
Superintendent Simon Bowden, of Thames Valley police, said the force were “committed to protecting communities from organisations that may seek to exploit them for extremist purposes”.
As reported on Breitbart London in the last year more British nationals joined the jihad in the Middle East than signed up for the UK’s Army reserves. Whilst there are 400 jihadists, only 170 Brits pledged to fight for their country.