Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Report: 73% of Perpetrators of Terrorist Operations are from Targeted Country | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Cologne- In its latest report on terrorism, the International Center for Counter-Terrorism in The Hague has found that the structure of terrorism had witnessed a clear process of “decentralization” through the phenomenon of “lone wolf”.

The report said going deep in the detection of terrorist networks while investigating with one of the detainees or when one of them is revealed has become impossible because of this “decentralization”.

The report entitled: “Fear Thy Neighbor: Radicalization and Jihadist Attacks in the West” has studied and analyzed all the terrorist attacks that were carried out in the United States and Europe between July 2014 and June 2017.

The study included 51 terrorist attacks during this period that took place in eight countries.

The country with the largest number of attacks was France with 17 attacks, followed by the United States with 16 attacks, Germany with six attacks, the UK with four attacks, Belgium and Canada with three attacks each and then Denmark and Sweden with one attack each.

Therefore, 32 attacks were carried out in Europe and the remaining 19 in North America.

The death toll stands at 395 in total with 1,549 injuries, meaning the average fatalities per attack is 7.7 and the average age for an attacker is 27.3.

France is by far the country with the largest number of victims as 239 died in the attacks there, followed by the United States with 76 victims and 12 in Germany.

The report notes that the results of the analysis of social and demographic realities were the most dangerous consequences of these terrorist operations as it turned out that 56 of the perpetrators of these operations were citizens of the country in which they committed the attack, which constitutes 73 percent of the total perpetrators.

Another 14 percent were either legal residents or legitimate visitors from neighboring countries. Five percent were refugees or asylum seekers at the time of the attack while only six percent were residing in the country illegally.

The report also showed that at least 57 percent of the attackers had a prior criminal background. Only 18 percent of attackers are known to have previously been foreign fighters; however, these individuals tended to be involved in the episodes with the highest lethality.

It stated that 42 percent of attackers had a clear operational connection to an established terrorist group, in most cases ISIS, and 63 percent of attackers pledged allegiance to a terrorist group, almost always ISIS, during or before the attack.