Over the weekend, CEG published a new report examining the terror threat Europe has faced over the fifteen-month period since ISIS relinquished control of the last part of its Caliphate in Syria in Iraq.
The report, ‘Europe and the Fall of the Caliphate’, can be read here. Its findings were featured in this Sunday Telegraph story. The headline – ‘Jihadists attempted terror attacks every fortnight in Europe since ISIS fall, study finds’ – sums up one of the report’s key findings. Despite the fall of the Caliphate, Islamist plotting continues.
For further proof of that, just at look at what has happened in Europe...
On March 23rd, 2019, the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) lost its last piece of territorial Caliphate: Baghuz, a town in eastern Syria. This was a significant moment in the war against Islamist extremism. However, it did not signify either an enduring defeat for ISIS nor the ideology of Islamism. In Europe, for example, there have been – on average – two Islamist terror plots or attacks per month since ISIS relinquished its Caliphate.
On May 22, 2017, Salman Abedi carried out a suicide bombing at Manchester Arena that killed 22 and injured over 100 others. He was assisted by his younger brother, Hashem Abedi, who was jailed for 55 years for his involvement. The sentencing judge in that trial described the motivation behind the attack as “ to advance the ideological cause of Islamism”.
This week, a public inquiry began investigating those deaths. The purpose of the inquiry is to determine what happened and to learn where mistakes were made to prevent it from happening again. As the chairman of the inquiry Sir...