Jihadists: we'll attack Netherlands if we lose passports
Stop holding back radical Muslims who want to travel to Syria and Iraq or the probability of an attack in their own country will grow, just like in Canada.
Newspaper AD received this warning from Dutch fighters in Aleppo.
According to terrorism experts, it is better to confiscate the passports of jihadists so that jihadists can be monitored and further radicalization can be countered.
The police have found and investigated the possessions of Canadian shooter Michael Zehaf-Bibeau in a homeless shelter. The investigators concluded that he hoped to leave for Syria, and had been negotiating with Canadian authorities for a passport. They suspect that part of his motivation for his attack on the parliament, was the fact that the authorities would not issue him a passport. Canadian soldier Nathan Cirillo died during the attack.
About 50 potential jihadists' passports have been confiscated in the Netherlands. According to Dutch fighters in Syria, this increases the probability of terrorism in the country. The Netherlands already has a "higher profile" due to the participation in the fight against ISIS.
"I do not think you want to have hundreds of potential jihad fighters in your back yard" says one fighter in Aleppo. He calls a attack in the Netherlands an alternative for those who stayed behind. The Dutch Syria fighters say that soldiers and politicians will be targeted instead of citizens. They call them "legitimate targets". "The politicians decide to enter the war, soldiers are the pawns," they say.
For this reason it is "wise" to let jihadists go. "Give the noble Muslim freedom fighters their passports back and let them go," says another fighter.
According to terrorism experts, we will have to wait and see whether the passport confiscation will have the desired effect. "We do not know the benefits, let alone the disadvantages," says terrorism researcher Beatrice de Graaf. Yet she stands by the measure.
"If you let them go and they come back, then they will be trained and more determined" says terrorism expert Glenn Schoen. He also points out that two attacks in Brussels and Toulouse were committed by returning fighters.