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ISIS influencing Indian youths

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New Delhi: At a time when India is reeling under severe militancy concerns, the Syrian security forces arrested four Indian citizens who had gone there to join the terror outfit ISIS. This was disclosed by Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Al-Moallem on Wednesday during a press conference.

Notably, the Syrian Foreign Minister was on a four-day official visit to India.
“Four Indians who went to fight for the Islamic State are in a prison in Damascus right now,” Mr Al-Moallem said.

The Syrian minister also revealed that India and Syria were focusing on bolstering bilateral ties to deepen intelligence and security cooperation.

It might be mentioned that for quite some time Syria has been a breeding ground for terror outfits including the dreaded Islamic State. The country has already been ravaged due to the extremist forces.

“Terrorism does not know any boundary. My discussion with the External Affairs Minister of India Sushma Swaraj reflected that our views on important issues converge and that is why greater security cooperation between two sides is underway,” the Foreign Minister said.

Recently, Mumbai Police Commissioner’s office received a letter written by a member of the ISIS threatening ACP Bhanupratap Barge, an officer with Pune Anti-Terror Squad (ATS). The militant threatened to kill Barge and his family members for deradicalising a girl who ha made up her mind to join the militant group.

Earlier in November, Indian Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said in a statement that Muslims from south Indian states were more prone to get influenced by ISIS ideology than any other part of the country.

“It is a reality (some south Indian Muslims getting attracted to ISIS). It is a fact. But we should not undermine our vigil in other parts of the country,” he said.

Rijiju’s comments came at a time when, reports were making rounds that ISIS would carry out attacks in India. Reportedly, a single person would carry out the attack. ISIS had named the operation “Lone Wolf”.

Riju, however, termed the incidents of the hoisting of the ISIS flag in Jammu & Kashmir as sporadic. “These were isolated cases and not spread across the state or the country,” he said.(Inputs from agencies)

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Facebook, Twitter Urged to Do More to Police Hate on Sites

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Twitter to soon release Snapchat like feature. VOA
Fake accounts on Twitter are many. VOA

Tech giants Facebook, Twitter and Google are taking steps to police terrorists and hate groups on their sites, but more work needs to be done, the Simon Wiesenthal Center said Tuesday.

The organization released its annual digital terrorism and hate report card and gave a B-plus to Facebook, a B-minus to Twitter and a C-plus to Google.

Facebook spokeswoman Christine Chen said the company had no comment on the report. Representatives for Google and Twitter did not immediately return emails seeking comment.

ALSO READ: Social Media: Here is how it is creating Lifestyle pressure on Youth!

Facebook one of the most popular apps in US. Pixabay
Facebook one of the most popular apps in US. Pixabay

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the Wiesenthal Center’s associate dean, said Facebook in particular built “a recognition that bad folks might try to use their platform” as its business model. “There is plenty of material they haven’t dealt with to our satisfaction, but overall, especially in terms of hate, there’s zero tolerance,” Cooper said at a New York City news conference.

Rick Eaton, a senior researcher at the Wiesenthal Center, said hateful and violent posts on Instagram, which is part of Facebook, are quickly removed, but not before they can be widely shared.

He pointed to Instagram posts threatening terror attacks at the upcoming World Cup in Moscow. Another post promoted suicide attacks with the message, “You only die once. Why not make it martyrdom.”

Cooper said Twitter used to merit an F rating before it started cracking down on Islamic State tweets in 2016. He said the move came after testimony before a congressional committee revealed that “ISIS was delivering 200,000 tweets a day.”

ALSO READ: Teenagers using Social Media more likely to suffer sleep deprivations: Study

facebook
This photo shows Facebook launched on an iPhone, in North Andover, Mass., June 19, 2017. VOA

Cooper and Eaton said that as the big tech companies have gotten more aggressive in shutting down accounts that promote terrorism, racism and anti-Semitism, promoters of terrorism and hate have migrated to other sites such as VK.com, a Facebook lookalike that’s based in Russia.

There also are “alt-tech” sites like GoyFundMe, an alternative to GoFundMe, and BitChute, an alternative to Google-owned YouTube, Cooper said.

“If there’s an existing company that will give them a platform without looking too much at the content, they’ll use it,” he said. “But if not, they are attracted to those platforms that have basically no rules.”

The Los Angeles-based Wiesenthal Center is dedicated to fighting anti-Semitism, hate, and terrorism. (VOA)

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