Daesh lone wolves are still a threat in Europe

Daesh had, in a short time, morphed from a regional outfit to a ruthless international terror organisation.



France has come under attack again. A knife-wielding man in his twenties killed one and wounded four others in central Paris on Saturday evening. The assailant, a French citizen born in the southern Russian republic of Chechnya, was shot dead by the police. Daesh has claimed responsibility saying one of its "soldiers" carried out the attack. During the peak of their terror campaign, Daesh had actively recruited fighters from Chechnya. France, which is home to some 30,000 people of Chechen origin, had been on a high alert ever since President Emmanuel Macron pledged that efforts to defeat Daesh in Iraq and Syria would go hand-in-hand with other anti-terror campaigns. 
Daesh had, in a short time, morphed from a regional outfit to a ruthless international terror organisation. The outfit is far less important now than it was about three years ago, when it controlled swathes of land in Syria and Iraq and had the resources to run a de facto state. With the fall of Raqqa and Mosul, the group lost its strongholds, though it still has hideouts in the deserts of the Middle East, some parts of Africa and Afghanistan. Knife attacks on the streets, and mowing down innocent pedestrians are a new tactic adopted by the group to bypass a tightened security regime in Europe. This isolated attack carried out by a sole knifeman speaks little of Daesh's outreach, but is a growing security concern. Even a small incident such as this, for which strategic planning is hardly required, affects the social fabric of society. The fact that the young perpetrator - categorised as "fiche S", which in France is a list of people representing a threat to national security - was allowed to roam freely does not bode well in the wake of the growing number of terror incidents in Europe. While the world rallies around Paris to condemn the crime, Europe needs to make sure strict laws are in place to monitor suspects. Because a lone wolf ideologically inspired by a terrorist organisation could be more lethal than a conventional attacker as such individuals are hard to trace.


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