Manual outlines Muslim radicalization in prisons

Security officials from several European countries have developed a manual to help prison authorities prevent their jailhouses from becoming incubators for Muslim extremists. The manual, developed by France, Germany and Austria, includes signs that may indicate that a prisoner was becoming radicalized, including the presence of a growing beard. A prison group feared the manual could stigmatize Muslim inmates. The document was distributed at a two-day closed-door conference of European security experts that ended Wednesday. It will be given to prison personnel. Prisons “can be a facilitator and an accelerator” of radicalization and inmates are often “strongly destabilized” and therefore malleable, said Christophe Chaboud, head of France’s Anti-Terrorist Coordination Unit.
“It is not a question of religion but of confrontation with the West,” Chaboud said in a telephone interview. Islam is the second-largest religion in France and, while there are no official figures available, Muslims make up a large part of the inmate population — the majority in some prisons.
A disproportionate number of Muslims can be found in prisons in other European Union countries.
France, working with EU partners, found they shared problems of Muslim radicalization in prisons, Chaboud said. U.S. officials are also concerned about the potential for radicalization in their prisons. Elaine Ganley reports.

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Security Manual Highlights Muslim Radicalization in Prisons

Security officials in France, Germany and Austria have developed a manual to assist prison authorities in curbing Muslim extremism among inmates. The manual was distributed in Saint-Denis, outside of Paris, in a two-day closed-door conference of European security experts with the aim of distributing it to prison personnel. Christophe Chaboud, head of France’s Anti-Terrorist Coordination Unit, suggests that the prison system “can be a facilitator and an accelerator” of radicalization and inmates are often “strongly destabilized” and therefore malleable and vulnerable. A disproportionate number of Muslims can be found in prisons throughout the European Union. For security reasons, the manual has not been made public.

National Prison Administration Director Claude d’Harcourt claims that the problem isn’t the 80 inmates currently in France considered to be hardcore extremists, “It’s the circle around them – 200 to 300 who could be tempted.” President of the Interior, Michèle Alliot-Marie, also listed the internet and universities as possible spaces for training and passing along of information used in religious radicalism.

Muslim inmates living in fear for their safety at high-security prison

Muslim prisoners, including some convicted terrorists, inside one of Britain’s biggest high security prisons feel so unsafe that they have sought sanctuary in the jail’s segregation unit for their own protection, the chief inspector of prisons discloses today. Anne Owers says that there have been serious incidents of “prisoner-on-prisoner” violence inside Frankland prison, near Durham, with black and ethnic minority inmates in general the target of attacks and Muslim prisoners in particular.

Owers says in her inspection report on the high security jail published today that some, but not all, of the Muslim inmates who have been attacked had been convicted of terrorism offences. Fourteen prisoners have been identified by the prison authorities as involved in racist activities, some for racially motivated offences and others with links to racist organisations. Owers also reports there has been a “serious incident” involving groups of black and ethnic minority prisoners and white prisoners.

Two high-profile terrorists, Dhiren Barot and Omar Khyam, were moved out of Frankland prison in March amid claims the jail had become “an extremely dangerous environment for ethnic minority prisoners”. Barot’s solicitor, Mudassar Arani, told the high court that boiling water and oil had been thrown over Barot last July and he had spent a week in hospital. The prison inspectors report that when they surveyed inmates about their treatment by staff the responses by black and ethnic minority prisoners were worse than those of white prisoners on a range of issues and they were also over-represented in all disciplinary procedures, including use of force, segregation and adjudications. Alan Travis reports.

Frankland jail: Muslim inmates living in fear for their safety at high-security prison

Muslim prisoners, including some convicted terrorists, inside one of Britain’s biggest high security prisons feel so unsafe that they have sought sanctuary in the jail’s segregation unit for their own protection, the chief inspector of prisons discloses today. Anne Owers says that there have been serious incidents of “prisoner-on-prisoner” violence inside Frankland prison, near Durham, with black and ethnic minority inmates in general the target of attacks and Muslim prisoners in particular. Owers says in her inspection report on the high security jail published today that some, but not all, of the Muslim inmates who have been attacked had been convicted of terrorism offences. Fourteen prisoners have been identified by the prison authorities as involved in racist activities, some for racially motivated offences and others with links to racist organisations. Owers also reports there has been a “serious incident” involving groups of black and ethnic minority prisoners and white prisoners. Two high-profile terrorists, Dhiren Barot and Omar Khyam, were moved out of Frankland prison in March amid claims the jail had become “an extremely dangerous environment for ethnic minority prisoners”. Barot’s solicitor, Mudassar Arani, told the high court that boiling water and oil had been thrown over Barot last July and he had spent a week in hospital. The prison inspectors report that when they surveyed inmates about their treatment by staff the responses by black and ethnic minority prisoners were worse than those of white prisoners on a range of issues and they were also over-represented in all disciplinary procedures, including use of force, segregation and adjudications. Alan Travis reports.

Mosque visit by prison officers

Prison staff visited a city mosque to help prevent young Muslim prisoners from being “radicalised” by extremist inmates. Luke Serjeant, governor of Woodhill prison on Tattenhoe Street, said staff aimed to develop better understanding and links with Muslim communities to help protect the 100 Muslim prisoners at Woodhill from being targeted by Islamic extremists. Serjeant was featured on Channel 4 documentary Dispatches on Monday night, as it focused on the spread of Islamic extremism throughout British prisons. The programme revealed evidence that extremists were targeting young, vulnerable inmates that feel alienated from society and want a sense of purpose. One of the ways the service is responding is to provide a carefully vetted Islamic leader, or Imam, in each jail to guide and teach followers of the religion.

40 percent of prisoners are immigrants, says report

According to a new report published by the Italian daily newspaper Il Sole, almost 40 percent of prisoners held in Italian jails are foreign-born. According to the report, Moroccan and Romanians make up the largest numbers of these prisoners – with some 4,199 Moroccans and 2,738 Romanians, of the total 51,736 jailed in Italian prisons. The Il Sole report was based on statistics from the Italian penitentiary administration department. Albanians, Tunisians, Algerians, and Nigerians also comprise the large number of foreign nationals. Many were largely jailed because of their illegal status, not because of criminal allegations of violent behavior.

Jail staff failing to counter extremism, warns inspector

Inadequately trained staff inside Belmarsh high security prison are failing to challenge extremism and are in danger of feeding radicalisation by alienating Muslim inmates, the chief inspector of prisons has warned. Anne Owers said staff at the London jail, which holds nearly 200 Muslims, face a danger of fuelling anti-western attitudes. Independent prison monitoring boards have also warned of the need to understand the disruptive impact of terrorist prisoners inside prisons. The report said nearly two-thirds of Muslim inmates had felt unsafe and victimised by staff, with fewer than half believing staff treated them with respect. While 70 per cent of non-Muslim prisoners said they could turn to a member of staff, this was the case for only 40 per cent of Muslim inmates.http://themuslimweekly.com/newsdetails/fullstoryview.aspx?NewsID=29588ABB38AC8BF8EB585D29&MENUID=HOMENEWS&DESCRIPTION=UK%20News