Terror experts claim that Australia will be safer if they take home 30 ISIS brides and their families
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- Islamic State ISIS is an Islamic extremist terrorist organization controlling territory in Iraq...[+]
Affected Countries: australia;
A terror expert has recommended Australia allow jihadi brides stuck overseas to return to Australia, saying it would make the country safer in the long run.
Deakin University terror and security expert Dr Greg Barton argued the open-arms approach would reduce the spread of radicalisation, 7 News reported.
Dr Barton said refusing them the right to return to Australia after the collapse of ISIS would increase the likelihood of them using social media to attack the country and radicalise new recruits to the Islamist cause.
‘If we bring them back, we will know where they are,’ he said.
The comment comes as pressure mounts on the Australian government to bring home scores of Australian women living in refugee camps in northern Syria and Iraq.
At least 30 Australians are stuck in the Al-Hawl refugee camp in Syria, following the fall of the ISIS stronghold at Baghouz.
Among them are Kirsty Rosse-Emile – who moved to Syria with her husband in 2014 – and children of dead Australian terrorist Khaled Sharrouf.
Dr Barton noted keeping them overseas would increase their chances of reconnecting with the jihadi community.
‘They will be back online reaching out to Australians here and recruiting, and their story becomes all the more powerful, because they have been refused the right of return,’ he said.
‘They are most dangerous not physically but digitally, as they turn up virtually in social media in family homes everywhere.’
Barton said 2014 legislation made it an offence to be in IS territory, which gave security agencies the power to monitor and control communications.
But Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s Dr John Coyne picked up the thread and said their radical ideologies would be easily picked up by the next generation.
He said allowing the ISIS brides to return would influence young people to see the western world in a negative light and reinforce messages of the west’s aversion towards Muslims.
‘And when they are rolling around the world, we can’t control them, we can’t control their activities … we cannot stop them recruiting others,’ he said.
Dr Coyne, who has spent decades working in intelligence, said it wasn’t guaranteed the brides would be deradicalised and it was worthwhile making an exception to allow them in the country.
Dr Clarke Jones, who works in youth intervention programs with Muslims, said the children stranded in camps are less likely to be radicalised if they came to Australia.
The Australian National University psychology researcher said the decision to let them in would show the Australian Muslim community the country was compassionate.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on Friday the government was working with the Red Cross to process the return of the Australian women and children.
Assessments would have to take place, including a citizenship and formal identification check, before being granted travel documents.
Mr Morrison’s stance comes after he said it was ‘appalling’ any Australians would go and join IS.
‘I’m not going to put one Australian life at risk to try and extract people from these dangerous situations,’ he said on Monday.
Source: Daily Mail