Frank Gardner’s return to Saudi Arabia

BBC Correspondent Frank Gardner, critically injured in a militant attack there nine years ago, returned to Saudi Arabia on his first trip back since the incident. The murderous insurgency that took so many lives here in the mid-2000s, including that of my cameraman Simon Cumbers, has been largely defeated, its militants killed, arrested or driven over the border into the desert wildernesses of Yemen. The article describes the experiences of Mr Gardner and the people he meets on his trip through Saudi Arabia.

British citizens are joining a so-called Jihad in Syria

There have been reports about the involvement of British citizens in the conflict in Syria. Due to the captivity of British photojournalist Mr Cantlie and Dutch photojournalist Mr Oerlemans, the British public has become concerned about young ‘jihadist’ Britons fighting in Syria. In this regard, MP Khalid Mahmood has warned the government about young British Muslims being radicalized by the conflict in Syria.

Mr Cantlie had previously informed the media that some of his captors were of British origin. He further revealed that while they were captives they also met a British doctor who was fighting against the Syrian government. The British doctor was working in an NHS hospital in London but when the uprising broke out he took a sabbatical and joined the fighters in Syria. They interviewed the doctor while he treated the photojournalists for their wounds sustained during their failed attempt to escape from captivity.

Further, BBC4’s Radio Today program has revealed the growing number of Britons fighting in Syria. Security Correspondent Frank Gardner travelled to Birmingham to investigate the news. He found that many young Britons are travelling to Turkey and easily crossing the border in order to participate in the conflict.

Blears ‘to give Muslims a voice’

Hazel Blears has said there will be “far more” work with Muslim communities to tackle radicalism, but ruled out talking to the most extreme groups. Ten years after US embassy bombings in Africa, the communities secretary said she wanted to help angry young people channel anger through democratic means. But it was not right for ministers to engage with those who justified suicide bombing or the destruction of Israel. A leading de-radicaliser says ministers should listen more to their grievances. As ceremonies mark the 10th anniversary of attacks on embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner said al-Qaeda’s violent tactics had come under mounting criticism from Islamist scholars who had previously supported it. But former jihadi Hanif Qadir, who tries to steer young men in east London away from violence said the number of young British Muslims attracted to violent extremism was growing.http://themuslimweekly.com/newsdetails/fullstoryview.aspx?NewsID=2C57BA6BE87C5B080C795A24&MENUID=HOMENEWS&DESCRIPTION=UK%20News