Police are investigating after three generations of the same family fled the French Riviera for the self-declared Islamic State, apparently to begin a new life together at the heart of global jihad.
The group, which includes the matriarch grandmother, her three children and their partners, plus four grandchildren, were reported missing by the grandfather who was concerned his grandchildren had not attended school this week. The youngest to have gone is just six months old. Family twitter accounts showed recent posts from Turkey, the main route for those leaving Europe to reach Syria for jihad.
French police have launched an investigation to confirm the report and to track down the family, reports theLocal.fr, although it may already be too late as while their disappearance was only reported this week, it has been reported they travelled to Syria in September.
Many thousands of people who had formerly been residing in European nations have now fled to war-torn Syria and Iraq, to take part in the foundation of a new Islamic caliphate. While many appear determined to stay, Western intelligence agencies are becoming acutely aware of the dangers of returning jihadists, who come to Europe with the willing and ability to attack their host nations.
Counter-terror police swooped on a group of four suspected terrorists this week, who are said to have been preparing to launch a jihadist attack in the United Kingdom. Group member Tarik Hassane, 21, is reported to have just returned to the UK and tweeted before his arrest “Oi lads… I smell war”.