Anthropologist Scott Atran, a research fellow with Oxford University who also teaches at University of Michigan and John Jay College in New York, is a leading expert in the study of the motivations of those who join jihadist ranks and the rise of the Islamic State group, and advises governments and international organizations on the issue. In this interview with Joseph Confavreux, he argues that the draw of IS is widely misunderstood, is not limited to disenfranchised communities, and that the organization can only be overcome by a different military, political and psychological approach by Western nations.
The massacres in Paris on November 13th last year and the attacks in Brussels on March 22nd have focused attention on Islamic State. Yet the threat from Al Qaeda terrorism has not gone away. Indeed, French intelligence agencies fear that the older terrorist movement may be planning to up the stakes with an attack on France in a bid to restore its flagging reputation in relation to its jihadist rival. Matthieu Suc reports.
The renowned 33-year-old died from wounds sustained in Friday's terrorist attack on a hotel and café in the West African country's capital.
French and US special forces helped Malian troops end siege in Bamako in which up to 27 people were killed.
Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Paris terror attacks on Friday, November 13th. But why has the terror group made France its “principal target”, ahead of other states involved in the anti-IS coalition in Iraq and Syria? French journalist and author David Thomson, an expert on French jihadists, explains the background to Mediapart's Joseph Confavreux.
High-level official in the French defence ministry says the threat comes from 'pros, not dropouts' and that new attacks are inevitable.
Ideological leader of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) said France had replaced a 'weakened' US in what he called the 'war on Islam'.
Chérif Kouachi and Saïd Kouachi, the two men wanted for the shooting massacre of 12 people in an attack on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday, were killed by police late Friday afternoon after an eight-hour siege of a building close to Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle airport. Meanwhile, Amedy Coulibaly, a gunman reported to have jihadist links to the Kouachi brothers, was also killed by police after they stormed a kosher supermarket in south-east Paris where earlier on Friday he had taken 16 people hostage. Four of the hostages died, apparently murdered by Coulibaly at the start of the siege, and another four were reported to be seriously wounded. In a phone interview with French TV station BFMTV before he died, Chérif Kouachi said he represented al-Qaeda's Yemeni branch, while Coulibaly apparently told the station he represented the organisation Islamic State and was acting in "synchronisation" with the Kouachi brothers. Meanwhile, police in France are still hunting a woman described as the partner and accomplice of Coulibaly’s, and who is said to be potentially “armed and dangerous”. This report by Michael Streeter and Graham Tearse.
Release of Serge Lazarevic after being held by Islamists for three years means there are now no more French hostages anywhere in world.
Denial comes after US website claimed French intelligence officer had joined terrior group and was target of US air strikes.
Report claims that, despite denials, French authorities and other European nations pay out millions over kidnaps that then help finance terrorism.
Suspect is described as veteran member of the international terror network now in charge of raising funds and manpower for fighting in Syria.
The two men of Tunisian origin, who are believed to be members of an al Qaeda cell in Yemen, were arrested while trying to leave the country.
A raft of new measures aimed at preventing the growing number of French nationals joining jihadist movements in Syria was approved at a meeting of the French cabinet on Wednesday. Official estimates are that 700 French citizens and residents have joined jihadist groups engaged in the three-year old civil war against the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, some of them teenagers. The issue was highlighted during the release last weekend of four French journalists who had been kidnapped in Syria by an al-Qaeda-linked group, when they said they had identified francophones among their captors. To understand more about just who the French jihadists are, and what motivates them, Mediapart Arab affairs correspondent Pierre Puchot turned to Radio France International journalist David Thomson, who carried out in-depth interviews with 18 of them for his recently-published book Les Français jihadistes.