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    Daesh Beguiles Danish Women With Targeted Propaganda

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    Terrorism Threat in Europe (269)

    Extremism is mounting in Europe, and women are getting increasingly involved in carrying out terrorist attacks, Danish security services have warned, citing a high level of terrorism threat remaining in Denmark.

    According to a recent threat assessment by the Center for Terror Analysis under the Security and Denmark's Intelligence Service (PET), the number of attacks or attempted attacks has risen from an average of one per month in the period from 2011 to 2014 to four in 2015 and nearly five in 2016.

    "The figures speak for themselves. Never before has Europe seen so many terrorist attacks," PET head Finn Borch Andersen told Danish Radio.

    Needless to say, the terrorism threat is aggravated by the proliferation of Islamist extremism through relentless propaganda. Although Denmark produced far less jihadi militants last year, an alarming fact is that the vast majority of the newly-fledged jihadists were female. Today, the proportion of women among Denmark's "foreign fighters," who left their country to fight for the jihadi cause in Iraq or Syria has risen to a third.

    According to PET's estimation, women nowadays generally play a greater role in Islamist environments both in Denmark and in the Middle East. Additionally, attacks carried out by women in Western countries were said to inspire fellow female Islamists in Denmark, which marks a transition to a more active role.

    "It is a change we have to be aware of," Finn Borch Andersen said.

    According to Borch Andersen, much of Daesh's present-day propaganda output specifically targeted women.

    "The basic idea is that it's rewarding to come over to the caliphate, where you can live and prosper. I am afraid that part of the propaganda is to blame for drawing them into conflict zones," Borch Andersen said, calling for an intensified cooperation between competent bodies, including Europol.

    According to PET's assessment, 145 people left Denmark for the conflict zone in the Middle East, with about half of them already having returned home. Of late, fewer trips to the conflict zone and fewer returns have been reported, though. The returnees remain a major problem for PET.

    "So far, they have been a fairly stable lot. Of course we are keeping an eye on whether there are indications that some of them could become dangerous," Borch Andersen ensured.

    In Daesh-controlled areas of Iraq and Syria, women are treated as property. They are habitually beaten, whipped, stoned and killed as punishment for a range of crimes. Besides, it is not uncommon for women deemed as 'infidels' to be raped and sold as slaves.

    Nevertheless, an array of sites exist for so-called "jihadi brides," offering both propaganda and practical advice for such a trip, for those who dream of living under Sharia law and becoming part of the "Islamic state."


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    Terrorism Threat in Europe (269)


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    jihadist propaganda, Daesh, Middle East, Scandinavia, Denmark
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