Pieter Van Ostaeyen
Pieter Van Ostaeyen studied Medieval History with a specialisation in the history of the Crusades (KULeuven 1999) and Arabic and Islamic Studies, focusing on the history of Salah ad-Din al-Ayyubi and the Assassins (KULeuven 2003). Van Ostaeyen has been analysing the conflict in Syria since the outset in 2011. In 2012 he began reporting on foreign fighters and extremist groups such as Jabhat al-Nusra, Ahrar as-Sham, Jund al-Aqsa and The Islamic State. Since September 1st 2016 he is a PhD applicant at the University of Leuven researching the usage of social media in the ideological strife between al-Qaeda and The Islamic State.
This report thoroughly analyses the profiles of individuals with ties to Italy who traveled to join the ranks of Islamic State and other armed groups from 2011 up to October 2017. It provides the first public and systematic investigation of foreign fighters with links to Italy, by inferring observations from 21 individual categories of variables. […]
The notion of ‘Responsibility to Protect’ (R2P) is typically associated with the global obligation of states to protect populations from mass atrocities; a principle which was endorsed by the United Nations in 2005. Two decades earlier, Abdullah Azzam’s fatwa Defense of Muslim Lands: The First Obligation After Iman (1984) established what could be described as […]
On 17 February 2015, Shamima Begum (15), Kadiza Sultana (17), and Amira Abase (17), boarded a flight from London’s Gatwick Airport to Istanbul. After an in Bayrampasa, Turkey, they got on a bus to Urfa – a town close to the Syrian border. It is thought that they crossed the Turkish-Syrian border and travelled towards […]