Europe

The European Union’s police agency says that ISIS extremist group’s recruitment and use of women to support its extremist cause could pave the way for different female roles in extremist groups in the future.

In a 34-page report on ISIS propaganda targeting women presented on Friday at Europol’s headquarters, the agency said “female jihadis are as ideologically motivated as their male counterparts and their sense of empowerment lies in contributing to the building of an Islamic state.”

It concludes that “numerous examples” of women, who either carried out extremist attacks or were arrested preventively, “prove that women are willing to use violence if the ideology allows them to do so. For now, it is not yet their role, but this balance may easily shift according to the organization’s strategic needs and developments on the ground,”

The report comes amid concerns about the risk posed by foreign fighters, including women, returning to their homes in Europe after the fall of the self-styled Islamic State caliphate in Syria and Iraq.

Europol Executive Director Catherine De Bolle said that 15% people convicted on “jihadi terrorism charges” in the EU in 2018 were women.

 

SOURCE: Associated Press 

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