Islamic State

Inside the bloody world of Islamic State's British 'Beatles'

France— Investigation

In the second of two articles based on interrogations by United States intelligence officials, Mediapart tells the story of the four notorious British jihadists who were to become known as 'The Beatles'. As Matthieu Suc reports, they were the first terrorists to represent to the wider world the true threat posed by Islamic State.

Islamic State's British 'Beatles' reveal ringleaders behind ransoming of French hostages

France— Investigation

Two British jihadists currently in custody in the United States, who were part of a group of four Britons dubbed 'The Beatles', have told their American interrogators the identity of the Islamic State leaders who masterminded the capture and then release of French hostages in 2014 in exchange for ransoms. As Mediapart can reveal, these senior IS leaders were the same people who ordered the murderous attacks in Paris on November 13th 2015. Matthieu Suc reports.

French firm Lafarge loses bid to halt 'crimes against humanity' case

International— Link

Ruling by top French court marks a major setback for Lafarge, which is accused of paying nearly 13 million euros to jihadist groups including the Islamic State (IS) to keep its cement factory in northern Syria running through the early years of the country's war.

Tracing the roots of the Islamic State group in Afghanistan

International

The US military has said its airstrike on Sunday on a vehicle in Kabul has prevented a new attack on the capital’s airport by the Afghan branch of the so-called Islamic State (IS) group who claimed responsibility for last Thursday’s suicide bombing there which left an estimated 170 people dead. But just who are the Afghan IS branch, known as the IS-K? Jean-Pierre Perrin details their history, beginning in 2014 when Pakistani jihadists crossed into Afghanistan and soon became a rival for the Taliban.

French secret services fear Taliban victory may inspire homegrown terrorists

International— Investigation

The Taliban's return to power in Kabul has raised fears about the potential knock-on effect that their victory will have in other parts of the world. French intelligence services believe that here the main danger is likely to come from the morale boost it will give to terrorists or potential terrorists already based in France. Matthieu Suc has spoken to members of the intelligence community to assess the potential threats following recent events in Afghanistan.

French forces in Mail arrest 'high-ranking' jihadist

International— Link

Dadi Ould Chouaib, also known as Abou Dardar, was arrested on June 11 in the flashpoint "tri-border" region between Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso.

The grim reasons why French police officers have become prime targets for terrorists

France— Investigation

The murder of a policewoman at Rambouillet, south west of Paris, on Friday April 23rd brought to 12 the number of members of the police and security forces who have been killed in terrorist attacks in France since 2015. Overall, attacks targeting police officers have grown in number over that period. This “French exception”  is a phenomenon which has become more prevalent since the collapse of Islamic State's self-styled 'Caliphate' in the Middle East. Matthieu Suc reports.

Ten French women who joined IS go on hunger strike in Syria camp

International— Link

Human rights experts from the UN have urged 57 countries, including Britain and France, to repatriate the wives and children of jihadists.

Trial opens of 14 accused over Charlie Hebdo, kosher store attacks

France— Link

The marathon trial of 14 people accused of being accomplices to the terrorist killings of 17 people in separate attacks in early January 2015 on the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine and a Jewish food store, and the shooting of a policewoman, opened in Paris on Wednesday and is due to run into November.

Al-Qaeda chief in North Africa killed, says French minister

International— Link

French defence minister Florence Parly has announced an operation led by French forces this week killed Abdelmalek Droukdel, leader of al-Qaeda in North Africa, and that last month a senior Islamic State group commander in Mali had also been captured.

Paris ceremonies mark November 2015 terrorist massacres

France— Link

Several ceremonies were held in Paris on Wednesday to mark the anniversary of the terrorist attacks in and around the capital on the evening of November 13th 2015, when 130 people died in a wave of shootings and bombings carried out by jihadists from the so-called Islamic State group.

French far right leader Le Pen to stand trial over IS tweets

France— Link

Marine Le Pen, the leader of the far-right Rassemblement national party (formerly the Front national), has been sent for trial for posting images of atrocities carried out by the so-called Islamic State group, under the charge of spreading “violent messages that incite terrorism or pornography or seriously harm human dignity”, which carries a maximum three-year jail sentence.

Orphans of French jihadists return to France from Syria

International— Link

A group of 12 children of deceased French jihadists was flown home on Monday from north-east Syria where they were held by Kurdish forces, the latest step in efforts to resolve the problem posed by the huge numbers of foreign jihadists and their families stranded in Syrian camps after the military defeat of the so-called Islamic State group.

Iraq offers to commute death sentences of French jihadists 'for money'

France— Link

Reports say Iraqi government wants $1m for each jihadist transferred from Syria and $2m each for those whose sentences are commuted.

French jihadists face Iraqi justice under the discreet orders of Paris

International— Investigation

Twelve former residents in France – eleven of them French citizens, one a Tunisian – have now been sentenced to death in Iraq for having been a member of Islamic State. But whatever charges they face, the way in which Iraqi justice is being carried out in relation to the jihadists has raised major concerns, including among many French lawyers. As Mediapart has revealed, the ides of trying these French citizens and residents in Iraq was conceived in Paris where officials want the process to be carried out “without visible involvement by France”. Matthieu Suc reports.