Successful attacks by IS are in decline for the first time in their countries of origin, according to a new report out by the Global Terrorism Index.
While it is a positive sign for the coalition fighting the terrorist group, the report also highlights that a record number of countries suffered their highest levels of terrorism in 2015.
That, according Steve Killelea, founder the Institute for Economics and Peace, the Australian think tank that produces the index, creates a whole new problem for Australia.
“Looking forward, there is rising volatility in South East Asia, driven in part by foreign fighters returning from the Syrian conflict,” the report reads.
“Victorians who have fought with militant groups overseas will pose many challenges should they return home. Approximately 110 Australians are thought to be fighting in the Syrian conflict, many of whom are Victorian.
“Currently, approximately 300 individuals are being monitored by Victoria Police’s Counter Terrorism Command. The majority of these individuals are linked to, or inspired by, the global jihadi movement.”
The report also found that half of all ISIL related terrorism plots were by lone actors who showed sympathy to ISIL, but without having any direct contact with the group.
All terror attacks in Australia have been carried out by a lone actor.
While this shows the challenges IS has in infiltrating these countries, lone actors have the potential to cause high casualties, as seen in the attacks in Nice and Orlando in 2016.
In 2015, lone actors were responsible for 22% of terrorist deaths in OECD countries.
Read the full report here.
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