February 21, 2014
Update: Ten youth have now been refused a Dutch passport on the grounds that security services suspect the individuals may be planning to go to Syria. The spokesman for NCTV, the Dutch counter-terrorism unit, told broadcaster NOS that the passport applications were blocked because of fears the youth would return ‘radicalized and traumatised’. This follows an NCTV announcement two weeks ago that the passports of eight youth planning to travel to Syria had been declared null and void. Spokesman Edmond Messchaert announced that those who disagree with the passport denial could apply to the courts.
Dutch News: http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2014/02/10_dutch_youngsters_refused_pa.php
Previous Euro-Islam summary: http://www.euro-islam.info/2014/02/04/individuals-travelling-netherlands-syria-passports-confiscated/
February 7, 2014
Delivering his first policy address since taking office in December, Johnson covered a broad range of topics, from appropriate uses of force by Customs and Border Protection agents to declining worker morale at Homeland Security, which has consistently received some of the lowest scores in the federal government’s annual worker-satisfaction survey.
The secretary noted that his morning intelligence briefings range in scope from “the latest terrorist plotting to a weather map,” adding that his department must constantly evolve to answer national security threats and hazards.
“Syria has become a matter of homeland security,” said Johnson, 56, the fourth Senate-confirmed secretary of Homeland Security.
Johnson said people from North America and Europe are traveling to war-torn Syria to fight, adding that “they will encounter radical, extremist influences” and possibly return to their home countries with the intent to do harm.
He also discussed home-grown terrorism, saying: “We face threats from those who self-radicalize to violence, the so-called ‘lone wolf,’ who did not train at an al-Qaeda camp overseas or become part of an enemy force, but who may be inspired by radical, violent ideology to do harm to Americans.”
He noted the Boston Marathon bombings in April that killed three people and wounded more than 200 others. The attacks were allegedly carried out by two brothers living in the United States who spent time in Muslim-dominated parts of Central Asia. One of the suspects, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was killed in a shootout with police, and the Justice Department has said it will seek the death penalty against the other, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Washington Post.com: http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/federal_government/jeh-johnson-homeland-security-chief-cites-threat-as-some-travel-to-fight-in-syrian-civil-war/2014/02/07/b1e8635e-9038-11e3-b227-12a45d109e03_story.html
January 28, 2014
Eight individuals planning to travel to Syria from the Netherlands have had their passports confiscated, Dick Schoof, head of counter-terrorism in the Netherlands, announced to a national radio station. According to Schoof, the confiscation occurred to prevent Dutch nationals from travelling to fight in Syria. This is the first time such measures have been employed, and Schoof noted that while the move is “effective”, he must now wait to hear court judgments regarding whether such confiscation is legally possible.
Dutch News: http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2014/01/eight_jihadists_have_their_pas.php