UK MPs urge passport revokation of Syria militants

UK MPs urge passport revokation of Syria militants
Sat May 10, 2014 11:59:21

A British parliamentary report has revealed that one in nine militants returning from abroad, mainly Syria, have taken part in a terror plot, further pointing out that the number of UK citizens travelling to fight in foreign conflicts reached “alarming levels unlike anything seen in recent years.”

The report, produced by the House of Commons’ Home Affairs Committee, also said, “a one-in-nine radicalization rate would make foreign fighter experience one of the strongest predictors of individual involvement in domestic operations that we know.”

According to the account, cited in a Saturday report by RT, Syria has become the “theatre of choice for foreign fighters” due to its proximity to Europe and the ease of travel to its major cities.

The conflict has seen unprecedented numbers of foreign insurgents traveling to the Arab country, with over 400 estimated to have travelled from the UK to help in a bid to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Further research by the committee found that “plots with foreign fighters are more likely to reach fruition and twice as likely to have a lethal impact.” The report states that in the first fortnight of 2014, 14 people were arrested in relation to Syrian-linked activities.

This was in comparison to the 24 people arrested over the course of the preceding year.

A month later, in February 2014, the UK-based Sunday Times reported that as many as 250 individuals who had fought in Syria had now returned back to Britain.

In an effort to halt the trend, UK politicians are demanding that such foreign insurgents should have their passports revoked, which would not allow them to travel anymore.

“We require an immediate response targeted at dissuading and preventing those who wish to go to fight from going; helping countries who are key to intercepting those who are entering Syria, and ensuring those who return do not present a danger to the UK,” said the group of politicians in the parliamentary report.

The power to revoke a British passport has only been used 14 times since April 2013, which has amazed some politicians.

Another scheme under consideration is revoking the citizenship of those British nationals who hold dual nationality. This can be undertaken by the home secretary if the person in question is “not conducive to the public good.”


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