The number of Islamism-inspired terrorism offenses in the UK has nearly doubled in the five years to the end of 2015, according to a new report. The period from 1998 to 2015, studied in a report on Islamist terrorism on British soil, has also seen a surge in the number of women taking part in these crimes with offenders are getting younger and the bulk of the Islamism-inspired threat coming from home-grown terrorism.
Contrary to popular belief, most of the attacks included in the report were not committed by lone attackers, the report said. Only 28 of the 269 were “lone wolves,” while three-quarters of those whose household status was known lived with their families.
Almost 80 percent had ties with some kind of extremist networks. In particular, al-Muhajiroun, a Salafist organization that had been banned in the UK in 2010 and again in 2014 under a new alias, has been linked to one-fourth of British terrorism convictions.
“Our security services will be particularly concerned that the major threat continues to be homegrown – and that females are playing an ever increasing role in terrorism. “Such a high concentration of offenders in London and Birmingham will also focus the minds of policymakers when it comes to deciding where to target our counter-terrorism efforts.”- Hannah Stuart Senior Research Fellow at The Henry Jackson Society and the report’s author
“As we continue to improve our policing of Islamist terrorism – the prevalent national security threat of our age – we should be aware that the vast majority of UK-based terrorists do not act alone. This research shows that the overwhelming majority are part of wider networks, formed online and in person, with family and friends – and have been radicalized here in Britain.”