Internet breeding ground of terrorism: UK MPs
Posted on: 06:56 PM IST Feb 06, 2012
London: The Internet is one of the most significant vehicles for promoting violent radicalism - more so than prisons, universities or places of worship, according to a UK parliamentary report. The Home Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons report 'Roots of Violent Radicalism', said that according to witnesses, the Internet played a part in most, if not all, cases of violent radicalisation.
Indian-origin British lawmaker Keith Vaz, chairman of the committee, said: "The July 7th bombings in London, carried out by four men from West Yorkshire, were a powerful demonstration of the devastating and far-reaching impact of home-grown radicalisation".
He added: "The conviction last week of four men from London and Cardiff radicalised over the Internet, for a plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange and launch a Mumbai-style atrocity on the streets of London, shows that we cannot let our vigilance slip".
Vaz called for more resources need to be directed to these threats and to preventing radicalisation through the Internet and in private spaces. These are the fertile breeding grounds for terrorism", he said.
Although there are statutory powers under the Terrorism Act 2006 for law enforcement agencies to order unlawful material to be removed from the Internet, the Committee recommended that Internet service providers themselves should be more active in monitoring the material they host, with appropriate guidance, advice and support from the Government.
The government should work with Internet providers to develop a code of practice for the removal of material which promotes violent extremism, it said, and added that the government should also give more support to civil society groups who want to challenge on-line extremist material.