How should Britain deal with this terrorist threat?

International conference on Islamist terrorism

Experts from Israel, Great Britain, France, Germany and Europol as well as around 250 guests from 24 nations came together in Stuttgart for the international specialist conference on Islamist terrorism.

The international specialist conference “New approaches and methods for preventing and combating Islamist terrorism” took place in the Ministry of the Interior. Experts from Israel, Great Britain, France, Germany and from Europol as well as around 250 guests from 24 nations came together in Stuttgart.

“Our primary goal must be to prevent a terrorist attack. To this end, the security authorities must be set up in the best possible way, both materially and personally, and the necessary legal framework for their effective action must be created - even in the run-up to an impending attack, "said Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Thomas Strobl at the opening of an international specialist conference in the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of the Interior . Experts from Israel, Great Britain, France, Germany and Europol came together here with around 250 guests from 24 nations to present new approaches and methods for preventing and combating Islamic terrorism.

Set the right accents to combat cybercrime

Interior Minister Thomas Strobl pointed out that in Baden-Württemberg, not least with the immediate programs from 2016 to optimize the tried and tested structures, the creation of conditions for an intensified fight against cybercrime and the tightening of the relevant provisions of the Police Act, the right accents are being put in place have set. However, further steps are necessary, including the creation of a means of detaining a person who poses a significant risk, or the introduction of online searches for the purpose of police security. It does not help any victim if one has options that only take effect after an attack has already taken place: “Besides all these measures, we must not neglect our preventive efforts. They are of outstanding importance. We have to make sure that people do not come under the spell of extremists in the first place. That is why it was an important step to set up the competence center against extremism in Baden-Württemberg (konex) ”, continued Interior Minister Thomas Strobl. With a view to the circumstances of the attack on Breitscheidplatz in Berlin, Strobl emphasized the essential importance of a trustworthy, comprehensive and above all fast exchange of all relevant information. This applies in particular to knowledge about the criminal careers of potential threats.

State Police President Gerhard Klotter emphasized that Islamist terrorism still poses a serious global threat. The enormous mobility of the growing scene is a major challenge. He went on to say: “In the meantime, the state and federal police forces have effective instruments for the early detection and assessment of the risk potential of members of the militant Salafist spectrum in terms of professional risk management. But we also come up against our limits, because the amount of personnel involved is extremely high. It is all the more important to look for solidarity across borders. A close and trusting international alliance of all security authorities is the order of the day. "

Opportunities for deradicalization and the prevention of extremism

The other contributions dealt with various options for deradicalization and the prevention of extremism, dealing with threats, methods for recognizing and assessing the risk of attack, police information management and dealing with social media in the course of terrorist situations as well as new investigative and search approaches and the Requirements for effective international cooperation in the fight against Islamist terrorism. An expert from the European Counter Terrorism Center (ECTC) at Europol highlighted the important role Europol plays in supporting the national investigative authorities. A member of the Israeli police gave a lecture on Lonesome Fighters and the possibilities and limits of protecting the population from and during terrorist rampages and attacks. The representative of the anti-terrorist unit RAID of the French Police Nationale explained, among other things, the lessons to be learned from the terrorist attacks of November 13, 2015 in Paris.

In his closing remarks, State Police President Klotter emphasized that the threat posed by international Islamist terrorism would continue and will continue to challenge our community of values ​​in the future. Relaxation is not in sight for the time being. That is why he once again underlined the need for an intensive and trusting exchange of information and data, including across borders, and emphasized the importance of international networks in this sensitive area. At the same time, one must be open to new, also unconventional approaches and methods in deradicalization and prevention work, but also in risk analysis. The evaluation, search and investigation instruments would have to be regularly put to the test and, if necessary, readjusted or further developed, and the offender-oriented immediate intervention in the event of an attack further strengthened. This is the only way to adequately counter the terrorist threat and to cope with the resulting challenges.