Eye on Extremism: April 5, 2023

Daily Sabah: Top PKK Members Go On Trial In France For Terror Financing

“A trial of senior figures of the terrorist group PKK accused of extortion, terrorist financing and terror propaganda began in Paris Tuesday. Nine among 11 suspects, who are Turkish citizens, appeared before the criminal court in the French capital. Investigators believe that France, alongside EU neighbors, offers a staging ground for PKK activities. Organized cells are believed to be active among France's up to 150,000 Kurdish community and among the 100,000 in the Netherlands and the million-strong community in Germany. The terrorist group, which emerged about four decades ago as a far-left faction claiming to be fighting for Kurdish rights, exploits the communities in Türkiye and abroad to draw recruits.”

Reuters: Up To 1 Mln People 'Disappeared' In Iraq In Last Half Century - UN

“Up to 1 million people have been "disappeared" in Iraq during a tumultuous last half century spanning the dictatorial rule of Saddam Hussein, U.S.-led military occupation and the rise of Islamic State militants, the United Nations said on Tuesday. The U.N. Committee on Enforced Disappearances urged Iraq, which has one of the highest numbers of missing people in the world, to seek victims and punish perpetrators. But that was hampered by the lack of definition of enforced disappearance as a crime in Iraqi law, its report said. ‘The UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances urged Iraq to immediately establish the basis to prevent, eradicate and repair this heinous crime,’ it said. There was no immediate reaction from an Iraqi government spokesperson or the interior ministry. Up to 290,000 people, including some 100,000 Kurds, were forcibly disappeared by Hussein's ‘genocidal campaign’ in Kurdistan between 1968 and 2003, the U.N. report said.”

United States

Fox News: VA Man Who Was Convicted Of Terrorism As Teen Sent Back To Prison After Meeting With Taliban Supporter

“A northern Virginia man convicted on terrorism charges as a teenager has been sent back to prison for a year after violating conditions of his release by meeting with convicted Taliban supporter John Walker Lindh and others linked to terrorism. Prosecutors had sought a two-year term at a hearing last week in U.S. District Court in Alexandria for Ali Shukri Amin of Dumfries, citing a wealth of evidence that Amin immediately began meeting and corresponding with convicted terrorists after he was released from prison in 2020. The terms of Amin's release barred him from meeting with known extremists. Amin was just 17 years old when he pleaded guilty in 2015 to helping the Islamic State group by using social media to support them. He also admitted helping a classmate, 18-year-old Reza Niknejad, travel to Syria to join the Islamic State.”


Daily Sabah: Turkish Operations Eliminate Dozens Of PKK Terrorists In March

“The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) have taken out nearly 100 members of the PKK terror group last month, according to official figures released Wednesday. As part of domestic security operations, a total of 80 terrorists, four of whom were so-called high-ranking officials, were eliminated across the country, the Interior Ministry informed. Of the four senior officials, one was on the red wanted list while one was grey-listed, another green, and the fourth was a non-listed fugitive. The ministry also revealed a total of 50 terrorists were eliminated in some 7,393 wide-scale domestic operations carried out across 26 regions from Oct. 1, 2022, until April 5. The National Defense Ministry too announced the elimination of five PKK/YPG terrorists in northern regions of neighboring Syria and Iraq this week.”

Middle East

i24 News: Israeli Forces Hit Hamas Targets In Gaza In Response To Rocket Fire

“Israeli forces on Wednesday morning attacked two Hamas sites for the production and storage of weapons in response to the launch of rockets from the enclave into Israeli territory overnight. ‘Fighter jets recently attacked a site for the production of weapons and another for the production and storage of weapons used by the terrorist organization Hamas in the central Gaza Strip,’ the military spokesperson said. ‘The attack was carried out in response to the launch of rockets overnight from the Gaza Strip into Israel,’ it added, noting that Hamas ‘bears responsibility for what is happening in Gaza’ and will ‘pay the price for the security violations against the State of Israel.’ According to preliminary reports, a total of 18 rockets were fired into Israeli territory overnight. A number of Israeli towns bordering Gaza were attacked several times. There are no reports of casualties, but an industrial building was reportedly damaged by a rocket in the town of Sderot.”


Al Jazeera: Gunmen In Nigeria Seize Eight Students In Latest Abduction

“Gunmen in Nigeria’s northern Kaduna state kidnapped eight secondary school students coming from school along with an unknown number of others, authorities said on Tuesday, the latest in a wave of such abductions. Armed gangs operating mostly in remote parts of northwest Nigeria have carried out violent attacks against villagers, schools and motorists, abducting hundreds for ransom. Samuel Aruwan, the commissioner for internal security in Kaduna, said gunmen on Monday abducted the eight students from Awon Government Secondary School in the Kachia local government area. It was not immediately clear where the students were taken to, but the kidnappers often keep victims in the forests and only release them when a ransom is paid.”


Garowe Online: Al Shabab Infighting Escalates: Attack On Senior Foreign Leader's House In Jilib City

“In a surprising development, the Al Shabab terrorist group has attacked the house of one of its own'senior leaders, Jabir, in Jilib city, situated in the Central Juba region. Jabir is an influential member of the group and is known to have originated from Kenya. His residence is located in the fish market of Jilib district in the Middle Juba region. According to reports, militants under the command of Mahad Karatey launched an assault on Jabir's house. Somali national TV confirmed that there was a direct confrontation between two factions of the Al-Shabaab in the center of Jilib city. The infighting led to the death of five Al-Shabaab militants, while eight others were injured.”


The Star: Traditional Leader In Cameroon Kidnapped By Suspected Boko Haram Militants

“Suspected members of the terror group Boko Haram have abducted a traditional leader in Cameroon's Far North region, according to security and local sources. The traditional leader of Hidjelidje village was abducted after militants of the terror group raided the village late Monday, a military official in the region said. ‘They did not shoot. They just came and kidnapped the leader. Obviously, it was a targeted attack. Villagers are progressively fleeing the village,’ the official who asked not to be named told Xinhua by phone. Raids on civilian communities in the region in recent weeks have displaced several families, especially in the Logone and Chari division where the attacks have become frequent, according to security reports by the local police.”


AFP News: France Arrests Teenager Suspected Of Attack Plan

“France's domestic intelligence service on Tuesday arrested a 15-year-old, suspected of preparing an attack in the name of Islamic State ideology, a source close to the case told AFP. The DGSI intelligence service became aware of the teenager because ‘he was clearly convinced by the theories of Islamic State’, the source said. The teen was apprehended in the early hours of Tuesday in his home in Rosenau, a village of 2,400 inhabitants in the east of the country. ‘He was determined to make explosive devices,’ the source said.”


Associated Press: Swedes Arrest 5 Suspected Of Terror, Ties To Quran Burning

“Five men have been arrested ‘on suspicion of aiding and abetting terrorist offenses,’ Sweden’s SAPO domestic security agency said Tuesday, adding the case was related to the burning of a Quran in January in Stockholm and that an attack is not imminent. In a statement, Susanna Trehörning, deputy head of SAPO’ s counterterror unit said that the case had ‘international links to violent Islamist extremism.’ Swedish public radio said the suspects had links to the Islamic State group. Trehörning said that Tuesday’s arrests came following ‘extensive intelligence and investigative work ‘after the protests that were directed at Sweden in connection with the high-profile burning of the Quran in January and where there are international calls for attacks.’ She told Swedish broadcaster SVT that the suspects were in ‘a planning phase’ and that they ‘had not immediately thought of doing anything here and now.”

CNN: Suspect Charged With Terrorism Offenses Over Killing Of Russian Military Blogger Vladlen Tatarsky

“Russian authorities have formally charged Daria Trepova with terrorism offenses over the killing of Russian military blogger Vladlen Tatarsky. Trepova, 26, was charged under the criminal code pertaining to a ‘terrorist act committed by an organized group that resulted in the deliberate infliction of death on a person’ and the ‘illegal carrying of explosive devices committed by an organized group,’ according to a court statement published Tuesday. Tatarsky died in an explosion at a cafe in the center of St. Petersburg on Sunday, where he was appearing as a guest of a pro-war group. Investigators allege that Trepova, acting at the behest of Ukraine, brought a ‘statuette filled with explosives’ to the venue and handed it to Tatarsky.”

Daily Dose

Extremists: Their Words. Their Actions.


On October 27, 2018, domestic terrorist Robert D. Bowers carried out an anti-Semitic attack at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. He fired on congregants as they gathered for worship, killing 11 people and wounding six others.

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