UK authorities are facing an increased terror threat from battle-hardened fighters returning from Mosul and other conflict zones in Iraq and Syria. Security sources have told Sky News more than 400 former fighters are now believed to be back in Britain. The authorities believe there is a growing risk the UK could suffer the kind of mass gun and bomb attacks seen in France and Belgium recently, as many returning fighters will have been trained in the use of weapons and the construction of improvised explosive devices. It is a serious, two-pronged challenge for the police and security services, who are already working flat-out to counter the threat from homegrown lone-wolf extremists, like Khalid Masood, who launched last week’s deadly attack on Westminster.
Former Scotland Yard Specialist Firearms Officer and author Tony Long said combating an attack launched by a well-trained returning jihadist could be a tough prospect. He said: “These are combat-hardened soldiers . They might not be trained in the way that NATO might train their soldiers but they’ve seen more close quarter conflict and more urban fighting than probably most members of the British Armed Forces and you have to respect that.
“Of course they’re bringing that knowledge back with them to the UK and it’s very very difficult because of the legal restrictions that are put on the security services and the police to actually monitor all of these people.”
To date, only a fraction of those returning from the battlefields of Syria and Iraq have been prosecuted, as authorities need enough evidence to put before the courts and often returning fighters go to great lengths to cover up their overseas activities. Imran Khawaja, 29, from west London, is currently serving 12 years in prison after he faked his own death in Syria in an attempt to sneak back into the UK undetected. Khawaja had joined a militant group with links to so-called Islamic State while overseas. He was pictured posing with the severed heads of Syrian soldiers during his six months in the country. He was arrested as he tried to re-enter the UK through the port of Dover and later admitted preparing for acts of terrorism, attending a camp, receiving training and possessing firearms.
Security sources said they could not be certain that Khawaja would have launched an attack back home, but the pattern of returning jihadists posing a major risk to national security is well established. More than a decade ago, groups of al Qaeda trained terrorists were responsible for mass carnage in Europe and the United States. Those who launched the devastating attack on the London transport system on 7 July 2005 had attended al Qaeda training camps in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Some of the terrorists who launched a similar failed attack on London on 21 July 2005 had received weapons and explosives training, as had some of the plotters who planned to blow up airliners with liquid bombs in 2006. :: Traumatised children of Mosul2
Security expert Professor Tahir Abbas from the Royal United Services Institute said: “The police and security services are certainly preparing for all eventualities, because in Britain, we’ve had our lessons from the past. “These returning fighters pose a number of threats in relation to security here. “They’ve been through a lot of very traumatic conflict and engagement, often involved in street-to-street fighting.
“Now, having made their way back to Britain, they pose a particular threat because of their capacity – and perhaps they’ve been instructed to return, hold fire and wait for the go ahead to launch attacks.
“They are likely to be traumatised, but also extremely experienced and well trained individuals who pose a serious risk.” With the growing threat from returning fighters, emergency services have been increasing their training to respond to gun and bomb attacks. On March 19, more than 200 police officers carried out a training exercise on the River Thames, where police firearms teams boarded a boat in a training scenario involving dozens of hostages. The UK government has provided millions of pounds in extra funding to help Chief Constables across country to increase their firearms capability to respond to a terrorist attack.
:: Watch a special programme, The Battle For Mosul, at 7pm on Monday on Sky News.
An experienced part time SIA registered security/night concierge required for an ongoing permanent contract. This is for a large charity house organisation that offers temporary accommodation for the parents of very sick children who are in the nearby hospital. A minimum of 2 years experience in a similar job environment is preferred but not essential. For this position we are looking for someone who has excellent communication skills, can think for themselves and be very pro active in their approach. Due to the nature of the job you will be required to demonstrate a great deal of empathy towards the parents and also be able to deal with any problems that arise during the shift. You will become part of the team and should be confident in your approach to other people. You will be required to attend on site training and induction before you commence on employment. The hours are 21:00 07:00 hrs 2-4 nights per week working on a set rota. You will be required to work weekends within your rota.
Wage is approximately 8.50 per hour.
Job Type: Part-time
Required licence or certification:
- SIA Door Supervisor Licence
Oltec FM have an exciting opportunity for a Loss prevention officer to work at our prestigious retail contract in Grimsby, Hull and surrounding areas. Must be willing to travel. If you already have security experience preferably in Retail (but not essential for the right candidate) we would love to hear from you.
Duties will include store patrols, acting as visual deterrent, dealing & responding to incidents, completing any necessary paperwork & reports. The required candidate must have a valid SIA Licence, excellent customer service skills and be a strong communicator. All candidates must be smart in appearance, available to work various shifts.
Additional hours may be available in other stores so travel may be needed. Essential Experience Ability to contribute to the team
Ability to use your own initiative Attention to Detail Confident dealing with the public
Customer Focussed Approach Previous Security Experience SIA Licence
Strong Verbal Communication Skills Strong written communication skills Job Type: Permanent
Salary: 7.20 /hour
Loss Prevention Officer