IS extremist group is still capable of sending funds to supporters: UN experts

Members of the hardline al Shabaab Islamist rebel group hold their weapons in Somalia's capital Mogadishu, January 1, 2010. REUTERS/Feisal Omar

Vastavam web: The Islamic State extremist group is still capable of sending funds to supporters and motivating attacks in Europe and elsewhere despite military pressure and falling revenue and al-Qaida remains resilient especially in West Africa, East Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, UN experts said in a report.The experts monitoring sanctions against the extremist groups said competition between the Islamic State and al-Qaida continues, but “shifting alliances” among fighters “and cooperation on the tactical level in several regions also allow them to move between various groups.”

The experts said in the report to the UN Security Council that “the core” of the Islamic State extremist group is adapting to military pressure in Iraq and Syria by delegating decision-making responsibility to local commanders and switching to encrypted communications.Several member states highlighted “the increasingly creative use of drones” by IS, primarily in Iraq and Syria.It said IS “continues to send funds to its affiliates worldwide” and is likely to do so as long as the group has the means. IS leaders have also sent money to places where the group doesn’t have affiliates in an attempt to prepare for its eventual defeat in Iraq and Syria, according to an unidentified UN member state quoted in the report.

The experts quote several member states as saying IS fighters returning home generally fall into three categories: Those disenchanted with the extremist group “and terrorism as an ideology” who can potentially be deradicalized and reintegrated into society; a much smaller group of high-risk individuals who return with the aim of conducting “terror attacks”; and individuals who have cut ties with IS but “remain radicalised and are ready to join another terrorist group should the opportunity arise.” It quoted some member states reporting “an increase in radicalisation and violent extremism” linked to IS networks in Europe.

The Arabian Peninsula faces “a significant threat” from al-Qaida and IS in Yemen, the report said. It said a member state reported that over 30 IS-related “terrorist plots” have been disrupted in the region, including one in June targeting the Grand Mosque in Mecca, and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia.