Research Papers

ICCT Research Papers series includes the Centre’s academic research papers that offer in-depth research on a topic, theme or issue related to counter-terrorism. All publications have been peer-reviewed by ICCT’s Editorial Board and reflect the high standards of the Centre that focus on original and independent research and analysis.

View all
Policy Briefs

ICCT Policy Briefs series reflects one of the core tasks of the Centre, namely exchanging knowledge and experiences with policymakers. Within these series, the aim is to provide a general overview of a certain topic, offering background information and policy recommendations. All Policy Briefs have been peer-reviewed by the Editorial Board prior to publication.

View all

ICCT Reports offer reflections of Meetings, Events and Projects. Reports offer the possibility of looking into ICCT meetings and events, and/or full reports on research and projects.

View all

ICCT Perspectives are Commentaries and Op-Eds, mainly written by Research Fellows. Perspectives respond to or analyse timely topics. The aim is to offer background and a deeper understanding for a wide public. Perspectives are the author’s own views.

View all
Perspective | 17 Nov 2022
States’ Prevention of Terrorism and the Rule of Law: Challenging the ‘magic’ of Artificial Intelligence (AI)

This perspective critically examines some challenges posed to the rule of law and human rights by states’ use of data-driven learning-based artificial intelligence (AI) systems for identifying individuals presenting a threat to national security.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Nov 2022
How do Terrorists use Financial Technologies?

This perspective argues that despite the concern from researchers, policymakers, and the media about terrorist's use of financial technologies, there is little empirical evidence of the adoption of widespread sophisticated financial plots.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 Oct 2022
Dusty Feet: The Postings of an ISIS Blogger

This research paper retells the stories of an individual's journey to join, dwell and fight for ISIS by examining Zafirr Golamaully's series of blogs called 'Dusty Feet'.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Oct 2022
Dutch Flags and Maple Leaves: How Conspiracy Theories Created a Transnational Far-Right

This perspective analyses how protests from The Dutch Farmers' Movement and the Canadian Freedom Convoy are being used by the far-right to spread conspiracy theories and capitalise on anti-government sentiments developed locally to promote the idea that there is a transnational far-right.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Sep 2022
A New Phase in the Fight against al-Shabaab in the Horn of Africa

On the 9 year anniversary of the Westgate attack, this Perspective takes stock of recent political developments and the evolution of the threat from al-Shabaab within both Somalia and Kenya.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Sep 2022
The European Court of Human Rights Sitting on the Fence?: Its Ruling and Impact on the Repatriation of European Children from North-East Syria

This perspective analyses the recent ECtHR ruling and explains its impact on the policy of European countries to repatriate children that are still in the Northeast Syria camps.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Aug 2022
One Year of Taliban Rule in Afghanistan: A Predictable Disaster

This Perspective will assess five common predictions of the Taliban's rule in Afghanistan when they took over a year ago and consider whether things turned out as badly as many believed.

Read more
Policy Brief | 15 Aug 2022
Mass Displacement and Violent Extremism in the Sahel: A Vicious Circle?

This policy brief aims to assess how displacement simultaneously constitutes one of the symptoms & the potentially aggravating factors of the Sahel crisis.

Read more
Perspective | 1 Aug 2022
Trials in Absentia of Foreign Fighters and their Families?

This Perspective delves into the issue of in absentia prosecution (i.e. without the suspect being present) of individuals who travelled to Syria, analysing the law at the international and domestic level.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Jul 2022
What Leadership Type will Succeed Al-Qaeda’s al-Zawahiri?

This Perspective critically examines what type of leader al-Zawahiri has been and what type his eventual successor could be by highlighting five possible successor types.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Jul 2022
Foreign Fighters, Foreign Volunteers and Mercenaries in the Ukrainian Armed Conflict

This Perspective addresses the legal status of foreign individuals joining the conflict in Ukraine, and its legal and political consequences.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Jul 2022
Counter-Terrorism in the Sahel: Increased Instability and Political Tensions

This perspective analyses how instability and political tensions are impacting the fight against Terrorism in the Sahel.

Read more
Perspective | 30 Jun 2022
Assessing US Domestic Extremism in Light of Capitol Riot Investigations

This Perspective reviews the current state of the federal investigation into the perpetrators of the Capitol Riot and provides an overview of the shifting US counter-terrorism landscape.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Jun 2022
A Global Strategy to Address the Islamic State in Africa

This Perspective proposes four strategic principles and six operational guidelines to guide the Coalition’s mission in Africa.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Jun 2022
Turkish Military Offensive in Syria: Consequences for Counter-Terrorism Operations

This Perspective explores the potential implications of another Turkish invasion for both local and international security.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Jun 2022
Ted Kaczynski, Anti-Technology Radicalism and Eco-Fascism

This Perspective focuses on the co-opting of Kaczynski’s ideology by self-styled eco-fascists, why he appeals to these communities, and what the implications could be for potential future eco-fascist threats.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Jun 2022
What the Zeitgeist can Tell us About the Future of Terrorism

This short article revisits the concepts of terrorism waves and the Zeitgeist, with a view to reflect on what terrorist threat landscape may lie on the horizon.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 May 2022
Right-Wing Extremism in the Military

This research paper seeks to examine the right-wing military-extremism nexus by surveying potential consequences arising from the presence of right-wing extremists within Western militaries.

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 May 2022
Militia Violent Extremists in the United States: Understanding the Evolution of the Threat

This Policy Brief outlines several approaches that can be adopted by U.S. policymakers to address the challenges posed by militia violent extremist groups.

Read more
Perspective | 18 May 2022
The Buffalo Attack – An Analysis of the Manifesto

This Perspective analyses the Buffalo shooter's manifesto.

Read more
Perspective | 18 May 2022
Lessons From the Buffalo Shooting: Responses to Violent White Supremacy

Drawing on the Buffalo shooting, this Perspective considers what insights can be gathered to tackle violent right-wing content online.

Read more
Perspective | 4 May 2022
Foreign Volunteers in Ukraine: Security Considerations for Europe

This article outlines several points of consideration relevant to volunteers in Ukraine which may have implications for European governments.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Apr 2022
Salle d’Audience ou Scène de Théâtre? Mise en Scène Versus Procès Équitable Dans l’Affaire des Attentats de Paris

Cette perspective explore la manière dont les performances des acteurs de la salle d'audience dans l'affaire des attentats de Paris peuvent avoir un impact sur le droit des accusés à un procès équitable, ainsi que sur l'accès des parties civiles à la justice.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Apr 2022
Customary Leaders and Terrorism in the Sahel: Co-opted, Coerced, or Killed?

Regarded by violent extremist groups as rival governance actors, customary authorities have been targeted by terrorists’ propaganda and violence. This Perspective provides an overview of the types of interactions between customary authorities and terrorist organisations in the Sahel.

Read more
Research Paper | 31 Mar 2022
Al-Qaeda’s Algerian Strategy: Attempts to Co-opt the Hirak and Rehabilitate the Salafi-Jihadi Image

This Research Paper examines al-Qaeda commentary on the Hirak through qualitative content analysis and identifies shifts in propaganda messaging. The research also seeks to contribute towards a gap in the literature by addressing a not commonly discussed subject matter within terrorism studies.

Read more
Report | 30 Mar 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier – Recommandations en Matière de Politique et de Programmation

Ce document fournit des recommandations politiques pour renforcer la résilience des communautés contre l'extrémisme violent dans les régions frontalières du Mali, du Niger et du Burkina Faso.

Read more
Report | 30 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances – Programming and Policy Recommendations

This document provides policy recommendations for building community resilience against violent extremism in the border regions of Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Mar 2022
An Interview with Bellingcat Journalist Michael Colborne on the Azov Movement in Ukraine

An interview with Bellingcat journalist Michael Colborne on his book 'From the Fires of War: Ukraine’s Azov Movement and the Global Far Right', in the context of the Russo-Ukrainian war.

Read more
Perspective | 25 Mar 2022
Courtroom or Stage? Performance Versus a Fair Trial in the Paris Attacks Case

This Perspective explores the ways in which the performances of courtroom actors in the Paris attacks trial may impact on the defendants’ right to a fair trial, as well as civil parties’ access to justice.

Read more
Report | 23 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances – Traditional and Religious Authorities’ Resilience to Violent Extremism in Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso

This report explores how traditional and religious authorities can be valuable for countering extremism and supporting governance in the border regions of Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso.

Read more
Report | 23 Mar 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier – La Résilience des Autorités Traditionelles et Religieuses Face à l’Extrémisme Violent au Mali, au Niger et au Burkina Faso

Les autorités traditionnelles et religieuses s’avèrent être des acteurs incontournables en matière d’accompagnement de la gouvernance au Sahel. Ainsi, elles peuvent donc soutenir les efforts de l’USAID en Afrique de l’Ouest en matière de lutte contre l’extrémisme violent, qui applique une approche holistique pour s’attaquer aux causes profondes de l’extrémisme violent

Read more
Report | 23 Mar 2022
Méthodologie de l’Étude Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier

Ce document présente la méthodologie ayant été adoptée pour la réalisation de l’étude “Acteurs coutumiers dans un contexte singulier: La résilience des autorités traditionnelles et religieuses face à l’extrémisme violent au Mali, au Niger et au Burkina Faso”.

Read more
Report | 23 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances – Methodology

This document presents the methodology for “Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: Traditional and religious authorities’ resilience to violent extremism in Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso.”

Read more
Report | 16 Mar 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier: Le Cas de la Région de Tillabéri au Niger

De toutes les régions incluses dans cette série de rapports, Tillabéri est celle qui détient les meilleurs résultats en ce qui concerne la résilience générale de la communauté et le fonctionnement des autorités traditionnelles et religieuses.

Read more
Report | 16 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: The Case of Niger’s Tillabéri Region

This report explores the successes and challenges faced by Tillabéri in community resilience and the roles played by traditional authorities in countering violent extremism.

Read more
Report | 9 Mar 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier: Le Cas du Nord-Est du Mali

Ce rapport s’interroge sur le rôle que jouent les chefs traditionnels et religieux dans la résilience des communautés face à l’extrémisme violent dans la région Nord-Est du Mali.

Read more
Report | 9 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: The Case of Northeastern Mali

The Malian state and customary leaders attempt to govern the rural communities in Mali, but are constrained by violence and extremism. This report explores how this extremism may best be countered.

Read more
Report | 2 Mar 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier: Le Cas de la Région du Centre-Nord au Burkina Faso

Ce rapport analyse les rôles des autorités coutumières dans la gouvernance municipale et souligne leurs contributions à la résilience des communautés dans la région Centre-Nord du Burkina Faso.

Read more
Report | 2 Mar 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: The Case of Burkina Faso’s Centre-Nord Region

This report explores why Burkina Faso Centre-Nord shows a high level of community resilience and how it can deal with village chiefs being increasingly targeted by violent extremist organisations.

Read more
Report | 23 Feb 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier: Le Cas de la Région du Sahel au Burkina Faso

Pour autant, le Sahel obtient des résultats modérément bons pour un certain nombre d’autres indicateurs de résilience. En parallèle, se différencie des autres régions sur un aspect essentiel: les autorités étatiques formelles au niveau local jouent un rôle plus important que dans d’autres contextes. Comment expliquer cette divergence?

Read more
Report | 23 Feb 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: The Case of Burkina Faso’s Sahel Region

The Sahel reports more fatalities than any neighbouring region and has little trust in the authorities. Conversely, traditional authorities are viewed as providing good governance output. This report explores this discrepancy.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Feb 2022
The Importance of Public Relations in Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism

The policy brief makes the case that policymakers and practitioners need to consider how P/CVE programmes engage in public relations (PR), specifically in communicating transparently.

Read more
Report | 16 Feb 2022
Customary Characters in Uncustomary Circumstances: The Case of Burkina Faso’s Est Region

This report explores the roles traditional chiefs and religious leaders can and do play in building resilience in Burkina Faso's Est region.

Read more
Report | 16 Feb 2022
Acteurs Coutumiers Dans un Contexte Singulier: Le Cas de la Région Est du Burkina Faso

Ce rapport se concentre sur le rôle des acteurs de la gouvernance coutumière – chefs traditionnels et leaders religieux – afin d’évaluer leur contribution à la résilience des communautés face à l’extrémisme violent.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Feb 2022
De Repatriëring van Vijf Vrouwen en Elf Kinderen uit Syrië: Een Keerpunt in Nederland?

Op 4 februari 2022 heeft Nederland vijf vrouwen en hun elf kinderen uit het kamp al-Hol in Noordoost-Syrië gerepatrieerd om ervoor te zorgen dat deze vrouwen hier terecht zouden staan.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Feb 2022
The Repatriation of Five Women and Eleven Children from Syria: A Turning Point in the Netherlands?

The Netherlands repatriated five women with ties to ISIS along with their eleven children from North-eastern Syria. The five women are being brought back to the Netherlands to stand trial on terrorism charges. This perspective discusses the repatriation of women and children from Syria and the future of returning ISIS foreign fighters to the Netherlands.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Feb 2022
The Leader of ISIS is Dead, but Are Targeted Killings Effective?

ISIS leader al-Qurayshi died in a targeted killing on 2 February 2022. What are the short- and long-term effects of this U.S. counterterrorism tactic?

Read more
Policy Brief | 7 Feb 2022
Weapons in Afghanistan: The Taliban’s Spoils of War

This Policy Brief explores the large quantities of SALW left behind in Afghanistan and how the Taliban may use these newly acquired weapons.

Read more
Research Paper | 3 Feb 2022
Terrorist Threat Assessment 2019- 2021

The ICCT Threat Assessment provides data about the numbers, geographical distribution, and modus operandi of terrorist attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 1 Feb 2022
Political Upheaval and Counter-Terrorism in Burkina Faso: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

The military coup in Burkina Faso resulted from growing discontent with the state’s capacity to counter terrorism and violent extremism. This perspective analyses the impact of the coup on the evolution of the violent extremist threat.

Read more
Policy Brief | 31 Jan 2022
Cooperation with the Taliban to Counter Terrorism in Afghanistan

This policy brief examines prospects for international cooperation with the Taliban in order to counter terrorism in Afghanistan.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Jan 2022
Female Veterans and Right-Wing Extremism: Becoming ‘One of the Boys’

This perspective explores the link between the pathways of some female veterans into right-wing extremism and the hypermasculine military environment.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Dec 2021
Gender-Sensitive Approaches to FTF Child Returnee Management

This paper highlights the challenges for training professionals to enable gender-sensitive rehabilitation and reintegration interventions for children returning to Europe from the conflict zone in Iraq and Syria. The paper identifies the need for gender-sensitive training and responses.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Dec 2021
“Recognition” and the Taliban’s International Legal Status

This perspective examines the "recognition" of the Taliban as Afghanistan's new government, the preconditions and consequences of this recognition, and how it may affect counter-terrorism efforts.

Read more
Alert | 15 Dec 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 7: Counter-Terrorism and Women’s Rights with Amb. Roya Rahmani

In our seventh podcast episode, we talk to Ambassador Roya Rahmani, Afghan diplomat, and the first woman to serve as the Afghan ambassador to the United States and Indonesia. She discusses her experiences as a diplomat, her critical work promoting women's rights globally, and what the future holds for Afghanistan.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Dec 2021
Reframing Threats from Migrants in Europe

This perspective analyses how the securitisation of forced migration and the associated political rhetoric fuels an increased likelihood of domestic terrorism.

Read more
Policy Brief | 29 Nov 2021
The Expanding Use of Administrative Measures in a Counter-Terrorism Context – Part 2: In Need of a Gender and Age-Sensitive Approach

Administrative measures, when applied in a rule of law compliant manner, can function as a useful and legitimate tool to address a threat to national security, particularly when that threat is of a terrorist nature.

Read more
Policy Brief | 25 Nov 2021
Civilians on the Front Lines of (Counter-)Terrorism: Lessons From the Volunteers for the Defence of the Homeland in Burkina Faso

This policy brief explores the phenomenon of armed civilians in Burkina Faso, identifying the rationale behind it, challenges and lessons learned.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Nov 2021
We Need to Talk About Left-Wing Extremism. Or Do We?

Within counter-terrorism, there is little attention given to left-wing extremism. Van Dongen analyses why this phenomenon exists and whether it is justified.

Read more
Policy Brief | 22 Nov 2021
The 10th Anniversary of the Global Counterterrorism Forum: Time to Outgrow the Adolescence

The Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) was established in September 2011. The objective was to to set up a nimble, action-oriented, informal network with a limited membership to operate as an incubator for global counter-terrorism (CT) responses. The question raised in this policy brief is whether the GCTF, ten years since its inception, is still fit for purpose.

Read more
Alert | 17 Nov 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 6: Counter-Terrorism, Civil Liberties, and National Security with Hina Shamsi

In our sixth podcast episode, we talk to Hina Shamsi about her career spent protecting civil liberties and human rights within the framework of national security, and how her work has intersected with counter-terrorism over the past 20 years.

Read more
Policy Brief | 10 Nov 2021
The Expanding Use of Administrative Measures in a Counter-Terrorism Context – Part 1: In Need of Rule of Law Safeguards

To address the challenges of terrorism, states have adopted a broad set of measures to mitigate posed terrorist risks to national security. How and when can administrative measures can be applied in accordance with human rights?

Read more
Policy Brief | 8 Nov 2021
Suicide Bombings in Mindanao

This Policy Brief analyses the suicide bombing phenomena in the Philippines. The frequency of suicide bombing in January 2019 is unprecedented in Mindanao. This article highlights the three trends of suicide bombing in Mindanao and outlines measures the authorities can take to combat the threat.

Read more
Alert | 3 Nov 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Aflevering 5: Contraterrorisme en Internationale Diplomatie met Ambassadeur Janet Alberda [Dutch Translation]

Counter-Terrorism After 9/11 is een podcastserie die onderzoekt hoe terrorismebestrijding is veranderd in de nasleep van 9/11. We spreken met ambassadeur Janet Alberda over de relatie tussen internationale diplomatie en contraterrorisme.

Read more
Alert | 3 Nov 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 5: Counter-Terrorism and International Diplomacy with Amb. Janet Alberda

In our fifth podcast episode, we talk to Amb. Janet Alberda about her post-9/11 experiences in the Middle East, and the relationship between counter-terrorism and international diplomacy.

Read more
Report | 2 Nov 2021
The Battlefield of the Media: Reporting Terrorism in Conditions of Conflict and Political Repression

This report synthesises the findings of four country case study papers which explored the challenges for journalists in reporting on terrorism in conflict-affected or authoritarian societies in the Middle East/North Africa region.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Oct 2021
“We Are Worth Fighting for”: Women in Far-Right Extremism

Taking a detailed look at women in far-right extremism, this perspective explores their roles and impacts in these radical movements across North America and Europe.

Read more
Alert | 13 Oct 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 4: Counter-Terrorism Developments and Future Directions with Tom Parker

In our fourth episode, we speak to Tom Parker, author of "Avoiding the Terrorist Trap: Why Respect for Human Rights is the Key to Defeating Terrorism" and discuss his experience in the post-9/11 security landscape.

Read more
Alert | 29 Sep 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 3: Counter-Terrorism and The War on Terror with Bruce Hoffman

In our third episode, we speak to Bruce Hoffman, Professor of Security Studies at Georgetown University and Senior Fellow for counter-terrorism and homeland security at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Read more
Policy Brief | 24 Sep 2021
The US National Strategy on Countering Domestic Terrorism as a Model for the EU

This policy brief highlights US national strategy for countering domestic terrorism as a blueprint for improving the EU model.

Read more
Alert | 21 Sep 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 2: Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights with Fionnuala Ní Aoláin

In the second episode of our podcast, we speak to Fionnuala Ní Aoláin, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms while Countering Terrorism. In this podcast, we explore critical human rights and challenges related to counter-terrorism after 9/11 with Fionnuala Ní Aoláin.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Sep 2021
The Public Relations of the Taliban: Then and Now

This perspective traces the evolution of Taliban public relations activity by comparing strategies from their recent takeover of Afghanistan to their previous occupation in 1996-2001.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Sep 2021
Islamist Militancy in Indonesia and the Philippines: Domestic Lineage and Sporadic Foreign Influence

This perspective examines how regional history and foreign influence explains the current state of Islamist militancy in Indonesia and the Philippines.

Read more
Alert | 8 Sep 2021
Counter-Terrorism After 9/11, Episode 1: Counter-Terrorism in Policing with Frank Straub

In our premiere episode, we speak to Frank Straub, Director of the Center for Mass Violence Response Studies at the US National Police Foundation, and a first responder during the September 11 attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Sep 2021
History’s Rhymes in the Fall of Kabul and Mosul: Flawed Ideas, Broken Promises, and Poisonous Spin

The authors of this perspective offers a comparative analysis between events in Iraq in 2014 and those that took place in Afghanistan last month.

Read more
Perspective | 31 Aug 2021
Why Terrorism Studies Miss the Mark When It Comes To Incels

Taking a critical look at terrorism studies’ approach to researching and understanding incels, this Perspective offers a starting point of discussion on incel research.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Aug 2021
The Rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan: Regional Responses and Security Threats

ICCT staff discuss the regional implications stemming from the rise of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and consider what this means for security in the region.

Read more
Research Paper | 24 Aug 2021
Pathways out of the Quagmire? Perspectives for al-Qaeda in the Sahel

In this article, Sergei Boeke examines counter-terrorism efforts against AQIM and JNIM and these groups' potential pathways of decline.

Read more
Perspective | 23 Aug 2021
The Fall of Afghanistan: A Blow to Counter-Terrorism and Rule of Law Efforts

This perspective explores the implications of the Taliban's capture of Afghanistan for international counter-terrorism and rule of law efforts.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Aug 2021
Whose Side Are They on? The Diversity of Far-Right Responses to Covid-19

How has the far-right responded to the Covid-19 pandemic globally, and what conclusions can we draw from this? Our latest perspective discusses further.

Read more
Report | 16 Aug 2021
Cashing in on Guns: An Interactive Infographic on Small Arms and Light Weapons and Terrorist Financing

Based on our year-long research project and report on SALW, this infographic presents a concise overview of our key findings on the nexus between SALW and terrorist financing.

Read more
Perspective | 5 Aug 2021
Assessing the Threat of Covid 19-Related Extremism in the West

How significant is this pandemic for the rise of right-wing extremism, and what are some of the long-lasting implications for governments, in a post Covid-19 world?

Read more
Report | 28 Jul 2021
Small Arms and Light Weapons as a Source of Terrorist Financing in Post-Qadhafi Libya

In this report, Mary Fitzgerald explores the use of SALW by non-state actors and the consequences this has had for terrorist financing. 

Read more
Perspective | 22 Jul 2021
The Upcoming SADC Intervention: A New Way Ahead to Combat Terrorism in Mozambique?

This perspective analyses potential SADC interventions and private military companies to combat Islamic State terrorism in Mozambique.

Read more
Research Paper | 21 Jul 2021
Siege Culture After Siege: Anatomy of a Neo-Nazi Terrorist Doctrine

This research paper examines the recently-revived doctrine advanced by neo-Nazi ideologue, James Mason, and argues that the terroristic advocacy of “Siege Culture” has a radicalising effect on right-wing extremists.

Read more
Policy Brief | 19 Jul 2021
Remembering Utøya, 10 Years Later: Enduring Lessons for Counter-Terrorism

In the ten years since the 2011 Norway Attacks, have we applied the lessons learned in counter-terrorism? This policy brief examines overlooked lessons from the attack and provides key recommendations for improving policies against far-right extremism today.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Jul 2021
The Forgotten Front: Dutch Fighters in Ukraine

In this perspective, the authors look at the understudied phenomenon of Dutch individuals travelling to Ukraine to join the conflict.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Jul 2021
CTRL, HATE, PRINT: Terrorists and the Appeal of 3D-Printed Weapons

In this perspective, Dr Veilleux-Lepage explores the developments of 3D-printed weapons, and what their significance is in the rise of extremism.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Jun 2021
Beyond the Dutch Election Manifestos: What Kind of Policy Can We Expect in The Netherlands to Counter Terrorism and Radicalisation in the Coming Four Years?

How are Dutch political parties addressing issues on counter-terrorism through their manifestos? ICCT Programme Lead Tanya Mehra discusses here.

Read more
Report | 14 Jun 2021
After the Attack: Lessons for Governments and Journalists in Reporting Terrorist Incidents

How is terrorism reported in non-Western countries, and how can the media's response to terrorism be improved? This report examines key lessons from attacks in Nigeria, Kenya and Sri Lanka.

Read more
Policy Brief | 10 Jun 2021
Yemen’s Houthis and the Terrorist Designation System

What are the implications of Biden's reversal of the designation of Yemen’s Houthi rebels as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation (FTO)?

Read more
Book | 21 May 2021
Handbook, Part V: Preparedness and Consequence Management

In the fifth and final part of the Handbook of Terrorism Prevention and Preparedness, the authors explore the required approach to minimize harm should prevention fail.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 May 2021
Evolution of Jihadism in Finland

This paper maps the evolution of jihadism in Finland, where jihadist activism has increased significantly in the last decade as internal organisation and contacts with transnational groups have deepened.

Read more
Research Paper | 11 May 2021
Far-Right Violent Extremism as a Failure of Status: Extremist Manifestos through the Lens of Ressentiment

This paper nuances existing understandings of terrorists’ motivations by uncovering the emotional process of ressentiment in the manifestos of far-right violent extremists.

Read more
Research Paper | 4 May 2021
Al-Hazimiyya: The Ideological Conflict Destroying the Islamic State from Within

How did the internal conflict within the Islamic State, instigated by the Al-Hazimiyya faction, develop and escalate over time?

Read more
Policy Brief | 29 Apr 2021
Maritime Malice in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines: The Asymmetric Maritime Threat at the Tri-Border Area

What are the weaknesses of the Trilateral Cooperative Arrangement between Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines, against maritime terrorism in the region? This policy brief highlights key challenges and recommendations.

Read more
Research Paper | 26 Apr 2021
Critical Perspectives on Salafism in the Netherlands

This study highlights key misconceptions about Salafism and policy shortcomings in the Netherlands which enforce an Islamophobic perspective, hampering Dutch Muslims' ability to cooperate with security services.

Read more
Report | 23 Apr 2021
Quand la Musique Cesse

Ce rapport, basé sur des données primaires collectées par l'UNICRI et l'ICCT sur le terrain dans le cadre de leur projet MERIT, cherche à comprendre l'impact du terrorisme sur les jeunes Maliens. Il révèle que les jeunes sont exposés à des niveaux accrus et à divers types de violence dans toutes les régions couvertes par l'étude et sont souvent contraints d'adhérer à de nouveaux systèmes de gouvernance imposés par les groupes terroristes.

Read more
Report | 23 Apr 2021
Les Dynamiques du Soutien et de la Participation à l’Extrémisme Violent

Le nombre de victimes de la violence armée au Mali a été multiplié par quatre entre 2016 et 2019, les jeunes étant parmi les plus durement touchés par la situation. Ce rapport va au-delà des facteurs habituels tels que l'insécurité et examinane entre autres le rôle joué par des facteurs tels que l'identification à son groupe ethnique ou religieux, le cadre géographique et l'exposition à la violence.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Apr 2021
Bordering on Hate: The Strategic Implications of White Supremacist Extremist Travel Between the United States and Canada

White supremacist extremists travel across the border between the United States and Canada to perpetrate violent attacks, spread propaganda, recruit, and network. This cross-border activity threatens to strengthen extremist movements in both countries.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Apr 2021
An Interview with NATO on Gender and Counter-Terrorism

An interview with Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges David van Weel, and NATO Secretary General’s Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Clare Hutchinson on NATO, gender and counter-terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 8 Apr 2021
Biden’s National Security Strategy: Domestic Threats Take Centre Stage

President Joe Biden released his Interim National Security Strategic Guidance last month. Counter-terrorism has been replaced by the threat posed by traditional state actors, such as China and Russia, as well as a looming climate crisis as the main challenge facing the United States today.

Read more
Report | 24 Mar 2021
Cashing in on Guns: Identifying the Nexus between Small Arms, Light Weapons and Terrorist Financing

Based on ICCT's year-long research project on Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) as a source of terrorism financing, this report outlines the phenomenon in the Middle East and West Africa, as well as policies and recommendations for the EU.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Mar 2021
New Kid on the Block: Prosecution of ISIS Fighters by the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria

This perspective assesses the terrorist trials held in camps and prisons within the territory of North and East Syria, by the non-state armed group in control of the region and considers their legality, adherence to international human rights standards, and the wider implications for the international community.

Read more
Book | 8 Mar 2021
Handbook, Part IV: Prevention of, and Preparedness for, Terrorist Attacks

In the fourth part of the Handbook of Terrorism Prevention and Preparedness, the authors explore the interaction between prevention and preparedness. These chapters explore what can, and what has been done, ranging from early warnings to the prevention of cyber-terrorism.

Read more
Report | 3 Mar 2021
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism: Countering Terrorism through Media in Egypt

How has the media landscape changed in the past decades? And to what extent has this been affected by the change in governments throughout the years? The latest report in the Strategic Communications project seeks to answer these questions, and delves deeper into the culture of media reporting on terrorism in Egypt.

Read more
Report | 24 Feb 2021
Dynamics of Support and Engagement: Understanding Malian Youths’ Attitudes towards Violent Extremism

Based on primary data collected by ICCT and UNICRI in the field as part of their MERIT project, this report looks beyond the usual factors to explain support for or engagement with violent extremism.

Read more
Report | 11 Feb 2021
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism: Syrian and Iraqi Citizen Journalists Versus the Islamic State

The paper explores how the rise of citizen journalism has impacted reporting of Islamic State terrorism in Syria and Iraq, and the tools and support necessary to help the individuals on the ground to provide first-hand news reporting.

Read more
Research Paper | 10 Feb 2021
A Comparative Analysis of the Data on Western Foreign Fighters in Syria and Iraq: Who Went and Why?

Through a comparative analysis of key publications on foreign fighters, this paper provides a thematic overview of the relevant literature to date. The paper examines and collates the most widely cited explanations and characteristics of foreign terrorist fighters.

Read more
Research Paper | 5 Feb 2021
Boko Haram, the Islamic State, and the Surge in Female Abductions in Southeastern Niger

This paper explores an increase in abductions of Muslim women and girls in southeastern Niger between March 2019 and the end of April 2020, and what this indicates about jihadist factional dynamics.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Jan 2021
ISIS and Sexual Terrorism: Scope, Challenges and the (Mis)Use of the Label 

Sexual violence in conflict has historically been overlooked with perpetrators often escaping punishment. In his latest perspective, Christophe Paulussen discusses the challenges of sexual terrorism and why the number of prosecutions is still shockingly low.

Read more
Report | 22 Jan 2021
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism: Iraq Case Study

This paper examines the coverage of the pan-Arab television stations Al-Arabiya and Al-Jazeera regarding events and terrorist attacks in the post-2003 Iraq invasion, including different insurgencies in Iraq.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Jan 2021
Keeping Faith with Trump: The Dangerous Causes and the Consequences

In order to understand what continuously motivates people to join the far-right, Lorne L. Dawson explores four aspects of the study of extremism: responses to the failure of prophecies; why people adopt extreme beliefs; the role of social dynamics and networks in consolidating extremist movements; and the nature and operation of charismatic leadership and authority.

Read more
Perspective Briefs | 18 Jan 2021
The Caliphate’s Legacy and Fringe Extremists

The terror threat of jihadism is as high as ever in Europe. Here, Thomas Renard highlights why European authorities need to remain vigilant throughout 2021.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Jan 2021
Deconstructing the Extreme Right

In this perspective piece, Donald Holbrook examines far-right ideology its trajectory, and considers how we can think about it more effectively.

Read more
Book | 15 Jan 2021
Handbook, Part III: Prevention of Preparatory Acts

In the third part of the Handbook of Terrorism Prevention and Preparedness, the authors explore outline key approaches to the prevention of preparatory acts.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Jan 2021
Staying in an Area Controlled by a Terrorist Organisation: Crime or Operational Necessity?

In this perspective, the authors discuss the reprecussions of the criminalisation of staying in an area controlled by a terrorist organisation.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Jan 2021
An Attack on the Capitol and Democracy: An Act of Terrorism?

A close examination of the recent events that took place in Washington DC. The storming of the US Capitol on 6th January is discussed in through a legal perspective.

Read more
| 9 Jan 2021
ICCT Annual Conference Magazine

For our Annual Conference, we have created a magazine that showcases our key achievements of 2021. Learn more about our projects, our worldwide impact and our journal publications and the people behind ICCT in this online, interactive magazine.

Read more
Report | 28 Dec 2020
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism: Libya Case Study

Libya has struggled to develop a professionalised media sector following the fall of the Gaddafi regime in 2011. This report outlines the struggles the country has faced in regarding reporting on terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Dec 2020
The Christchurch Attack Report: Key Takeaways on Tarrant’s Radicalization and Attack Planning

In this perspective, the authors examine the report published by New Zealand's government on the Christchurch terrorist attack of March 2019.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Dec 2020
Algeria in Mali: A Departure from the Military Non-Intervention Paradigm?

Starting with a unique insight into the latest Algerian reforms on counter-terrorism policies, the authors of this perspective then delve deeper into the complex relationships between Algeria and its neighbours.

Read more
Report | 16 Dec 2020
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism – Case Study of Government Communication during Westgate and DusitD2 Attacks

This report provides an analysis of media reporting in Kenya. The report looks at governmental, media and "citizen reporting" practices, especially in the context of the terrorist attacks of the Westgate Mall and the DusitD2 hotel.

Read more
Book | 10 Dec 2020
Handbook, Part II: Prevention of Radicalisation

In the second part of the Handbook of Terrorism Prevention and Preparedness, the authors explore outline key approaches to the prevention of radicalisation.

Read more
Book | 25 Nov 2020
Handbook, Part I: Lessons for Terrorism Prevention from Literature in Related Fields

In the first part of the Handbook of Terrorism Prevention and Preparedness, the authors explore what can be learned from crime prevention, conflict prevention, counterinsurgency and genocide prevention literature.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Nov 2020
Normalisation, Party Politics and Vigilantism: Why the Next Terrorist Wave Will Not Be Right-Wing Extremist

This paper will argue that for large parts of the West, concerns about the rise of right-wing extremism are misguided because of right-wing extremists' lacking organisational clout and preference for other tactics.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Nov 2020
Community and Gender in Counter-Terrorism Policy: Challenges and Opportunities for Transferability Across the Evolving Threat Landscape

This article examines the transferability of two decades of counter-terrorism policy structures, and illustrates how these policies are challenged by the emergence and resurgence of different threat profiles on the security horizon.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Nov 2020
Funding in Place: Local Financing Trends Behind Today’s Global Terrorist Threat

In this study, the authors examine current trends in localised terrorist financing and the counter-terrorist financing tools available to deal with the contemporary shift away from transnational to more local financing.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Nov 2020
The Islamic State’s Global Insurgency and its Counterstrategy Implications

This paper highlights the adhocratic nature of the Islamic State as a means for understanding the role which the structure and management of IS influences its resilience as a global movement.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Nov 2020
Incel Radical Milieu and External Locus of Control

This paper examines the pillars of incel ideology through an analysis of incels’ own vocabulary and narratives, and argues that a radical milieu can be an effective analytical framework for studying incel communities.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Nov 2020
Vienna Attack: the Path of a Prospective (Foreign) Terrorist Fighter

The recent Vienna attack highlights the challenge of effectively managing the risk posed by known violent extremists. In this Perspective, the authors reflect on the attacker's actions leading up to the attack, and whether the authorities could have prevented it.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Oct 2020
Q-Pilled: Conspiracy Theories, Trump, and Election Violence in the United States

What are the possibilities of electoral violence in the 2020 US Elections? This Perspective outlines key scenarios and examines likely reactions by QAnon adherents.

Read more
Report | 29 Oct 2020
Mitigating the Impact of Media Reporting of Terrorism: Case Study of the #BringBackOurGirls Campaign

This report examines the limitations and impacts of media reporting on terrorism in Nigeria, through the lens of the #BringBackOurGirls campaign.

Read more
Report | 21 Oct 2020
When the Music Stops: The Impact of Terrorism on Malian Youth

Using primary data collected by UNICRI and ICCT as part of the MERIT project, this report examines the socio-economic and psychological impacts of terrorism on Malian youth, who often face increased levels of violence and new systems of governance imposed by terrorist groups.

Read more
Report | 20 Oct 2020
Turning the Tap Off: The Impacts of Social Media Shutdown After Sri Lanka’s Easter Attacks

By highlighting the social media shutdown's limitations, social costs and impact on misinformation, this report presents key recommendations for policy-makers, journalists and other key stakeholders.

Read more
Report | 28 Sep 2020
The Use of Small Arms and Light Weapons by Terrorist Organisations as a Source of Finance

As part of ICCT's series of reports on Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW), this report synthesises the main observations and trends in the use of SALW by terrorist organisations as a source of finance.

Read more
Policy Brief | 2 Sep 2020
Re-Offending by Released Terrorist Prisoners: Separating Hype from Reality

This Policy Brief critically analyses terrorist re-offending in a wide range of international contexts, to inform the wider discussion on terrorist recidivism and rehabilitation.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Aug 2020
Spring Provides Timely Reminder of Incel Violence—And Clarifies How to Respond

Recent incidences of incel violence raise questions of whether these acts constitute terrorism. This Perspective compares the ideology and tactics behind incel violence with other key trends in terrorism to understand how we should best address it.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Aug 2020
The Long and Winding Road to Bringing the ISIS ‘Beatles’ to Justice

With new developments in the case of the foreign terrorist fighters who have been dubbed 'The Beatles', this Perspective assesses where the 'Beatles' can be brought to justice and the main legal challenges in this process.

Read more
Perspective | 23 Jul 2020
ISIS and al-Qaeda’s Commentary on American Protests

This Perspective by Sammie Wicks explores how international violent extremist organisations view current social unrest as an opportunity to highlight social challenges and recruit.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Jul 2020
The Threat of the Islamic State’s Extensive Use of Improvised Explosives

This Perspective delves into the threat posed by improvised explosive devices and explains the need for explosive decontamination to be considered as an active component of counter-terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Jul 2020
Shamima Begum, Citizenship Revocation and the Question of Due Process

This Perspective by ICCT's Julie Coleman and Joana Cook delves into the latest court ruling for Shamima Begum, and the balance between national security and the rule of law.

Read more
Report | 15 Jul 2020
Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) Trafficking, Smuggling, and Use for Criminality by Terrorists and Insurgents: A Brief Historical Overview

In this report, Colin P. Clarke uses both historical and contemporary examples to provide an overview of the use of SALW as both a source of terrorist financing and tools of the trade.

Read more
Report | 1 Jul 2020
ICCT Situation Report: The Use of Small Arms & Light Weapons by Terrorist Organisations as a Source of Finance in West Africa and the Horn of Africa

This situation report examines the acquisition, possession, and use of SALW as a source of finance by terrorist organisations active in West Africa and the Horn of Africa.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Jun 2020
Sudanese Human Smuggling Networks: Fueling Instability from North Africa to Europe

In addition to the vast humanitarian issues associated with Sudanese human smuggling networks: are these illicit flows open to be exploited by extremist groups—either for terrorist financing or for the movement of cells?

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Jun 2020
Framing in Times of Crisis: Responses to COVID-19 Amongst Far Right Movements and Organisations

In this Research Paper, Richard McNeil-Willson examines the framing processes developed by Far Right groups in response to the COVID-19 health crisis, and calls for more reflection on the role that ‘crisis frames’ play amongst Far Right groups.

Read more
Report | 17 Jun 2020
ICCT Situation Report: The Use of Small Arms & Light Weapons by Terrorist Organisations as a Source of Finance in South and Southeast Asia

This situation report investigates the use of small arms and light weapons as a source of finance for terrorism in South and Southeast Asia.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Jun 2020
La Mort de Droukdel: Implications pour AQMI et au Sahel

Après la mort du chef AQMI, Abdelmalek Droukdel, Julie Coleman et Méryl Demuynck analysent sa montée a travers les rangs échelons d'jihadiste et l'impact de sa mort sur le rapport de force dans la région.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Jun 2020
The Death of Droukdel: Implications for AQIM and the Sahel

Following the recent death of AQIM leader, Abdelmalek Droukdel, Julie Coleman and Méryl Demuynck look back at his rise through the jihadist ranks and ask, how will his death affect the balance of power in the region?

Read more
Policy Brief | 8 Jun 2020
The Future of the Islamic State’s Women: Assessing Their Potential Threat

In this Policy Brief, Jessica Davis explores the role of women in the Islamic State and presents an approach to assessing their potential threat.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Jun 2020
Analysing Personal Accounts of Perpetrators of Incel Violence: What Do They Want and Who Do They Target?

In this Perspective, ICCT Director Renske van der Veer calls on analysts to make use of incel writings as a means to understand their motivations—as well as to begin to answer the question: are incels terrorists?

Read more
Report | 3 Jun 2020
ICCT Situation Report: The Use of Small Arms & Light Weapons by Terrorist Organisations as a Source of Finance in the Middle East and North Africa

This situation report investigates the use of small arms and light weapons as a source of finance for terrorism in the Middle East and North Africa.

Read more
Policy Brief | 2 Jun 2020
Kosovo’s Experience in Repatriating Former Foreign Fighters

This policy brief examines Kosovo’s response to former foreign fighters and lessons EU member states can learn in handling this complex issue.

Read more
Research Paper | 26 May 2020
Swiping Right: The Allure of Hyper Masculinity and Cryptofascism for Men Who Join the Proud Boys

In this Research Paper, Samantha Kutner explores the scripts and narratives that attract the members of crypto-fascist extremist organisations with an in-depth analysis of the Proud Boys.

Read more
Perspective | 22 May 2020
The Threat of Jihadist Terrorism in Germany

In the wake of the April 15 arrest of four suspected members of an IS cell, what is the state of the Jihadist threat in Germany today?

Read more
Perspective | 20 May 2020
Male Supremacism and the Hanau Terrorist Attack: Between Online Misogyny and Far-Right Violence

This Perspective explores the links between misogyny and right-wing extremism, highlighting important caveats which should be kept in mind when discussing incels in the wake of the Hanau shooting.

Read more
Research Paper | 15 May 2020
Le Silence des Agneaux: France’s War Against ‘Jihadist Groups’ and Associated Legal Rationale

In this paper, Rebecca Mignot-Mahdavi highlights the missing legal perspectives which should be applied to France's counter-terrorism efforts.

Read more
Report | 12 May 2020
Rise O Muwahhid, Wherever You May Be: An Analysis of the Democratization of the Terrorist Threat in the West

This Report analyses the extent to which the terrorist threat in the West has continued to democratise, highlighting trends and developments in terrorist modus operandi in the post-9/11 era.

Read more
Policy Brief | 6 May 2020
The Last Frontier: Prisons and Violent Extremism in Mali

This policy brief uses data gathered from the growing number of Violent Extremist Offenders in Malian prisons to provide an overview of and recommendations for implementing rehabilitation interventions.

Read more
Policy Brief | 28 Apr 2020
The Growing Power of Online Communities of the Extreme-Right: Deriving Strength, Meaning, and Direction From Significant Socio-Political Events ‘in Real Life’

This policy brief examines the role of online communities of the extreme-right in radicalising individuals, particularly in the aftermath of offline events.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Apr 2020
The Russian Imperial Movement (RIM) and its Links to the Transnational White Supremacist Extremist Movement

The Russian Imperial Movement marks the first time the US State Department has designated a white supremacist extremist organisation as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) entity.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Apr 2020
L’impact du coronavirus sur le terrorisme au Sahel

Quel est l'impact de la pandémie COVID-19 sur les groupes terroristes du Sahel tels qu'al-Qaïda et l'État islamique?

Read more
Perspective | 16 Apr 2020
The Impact of Coronavirus on Terrorism in the Sahel

What impact does the COVID-19 pandemic have on terrorist groups in the Sahel like al-Qaeda and the Islamic State?

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Apr 2020
Rightist Violence: An Historical Perspective

In this essay, Tim Wilson traces the evolution of right-wing violence from its emergence in the 19th century to present day. It asks the questions: just how tactically innovative is rightist violence in the 21st century?

Read more
Report | 18 Mar 2020
Social Media in Mali and its Relation to Violent Extremism: A Youth Perspective

In this report, ICCT and UNICRI analyse data from their field work in Mali to determine the implications of social media use on violent extremism in Mali.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Mar 2020
Testament to Murder: The Violent Far-Right’s Increasing Use of Terrorist Manifestos

In this Policy Brief, Jacob Ware assesses far right manifestos for common themes, before discussing implications for counterterrorism scholars and practitioners.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Mar 2020
Les Sables Mouvants du Paysage Terroriste Sahélien

Dans une nouvelle Perpsective, Méryl Demuynck and Julie Coleman analysent le paysage complexe du terrorisme au Sahel.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Mar 2020
The Shifting Sands of the Sahel’s Terrorism Landscape

In a new Perspective for the ICCT, Méryl Demuynck and Julie Coleman map out the Sahel's terrorism landscape.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Feb 2020
The Dutch Approach to Extremist Offenders

This Policy Brief focuses on the Dutch approach to dealing with extremist offenders, and analyses Dutch policy choices that have been made from the perspectives of prosecution, rehabilitation, and reintegration.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Feb 2020
Foreign Terrorist Fighters from Southeast Asia: What Happens Next?

Focusing on Indonesia, Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, Colin P. Clarke, and Samuel Hodgson analyse the threats returning foreign fighters from South East Asia pose after the fall of the caliphate

Read more
Perspective | 10 Feb 2020
Male Supremacist Terrorism as a Rising Threat

This ICCT Perspective examines male supremacism as a right-wing extremist ideology, one that has contributed to terrorist attacks, primarily in the US, but also in Canada and Europe.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Feb 2020
El Chapo Bin Laden? Why Drug Cartels are not Terrorist Organisations

In this Perspective, Paul Rexton Kan de-bunks the theory that drug cartels should be classified as terrorist organisations.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Jan 2020
ISIS and Their Use of Slavery

In this Perspective, Nadia al-Dayel and Andrew Mumford warn that it is no longer sufficient to be concerned about just the physical liberation of territory from groups like ISIS—the human liberation of victims of slavery must also become a counterterrorism priority.

Read more
Call for Papers | 23 Jan 2020
Call for Papers – Waves: The Next Ten Years in Terrorism

To celebrate ICCT's ten year anniversary, we are looking for papers for a special edition of The ICCT Journal. Deadline for submission is Tuesday 14 April. Send to

Read more
Policy Brief | 13 Jan 2020
Far Right and Islamist Radicalisation in an Age of Austerity: A Review of Sociological Trends and Implications for Policy

This policy brief provides an overview of the sociological issues underpinning the issues of far right and Islamist reciprocal or cumulative radicalisation in the Western European context.

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Dec 2019
Using the McKinsey 7S Framework to Assess Al-Qaeda Over Three Decades: Lessons for the Future

In this paper, Colin P. Clarke takes a novel approach to the analysis of al-Qaeda's longevity; using McKinsey's 7S Framework to analyse the organisational characteristics of arguably the world's most high-profile terrorist group.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Dec 2019
The Prosecution of Foreign Fighters under International Humanitarian Law: Misconceptions and Opportunities

In this Perspective, the interaction between counter-terrorism and international humanitarian law will be discussed, as well as the opportunities that the latter field of law can provide in the prosecution of foreign fighters.

Read more
Report | 11 Dec 2019
Terrorism in the Age of Technology

In this Report, for Clingendael's Strategic Monitor 2019-2020, ICCT Director Renske van der Veer aims to put the threat posed by the use of technology in terrorism to the West, more specifically to The Netherlands, in perspective.

Read more
Report | 10 Dec 2019
Terrorism Threat Assessment 2018 – 2019

The International Centre for Counter-Terrorism – The Hague (ICCT) developed a baseline Terrorism Threat Assessment.

Read more
Perspective | 5 Dec 2019
Counterterrorism Professionals on Terrorism Research: An End-User Assessment

This Perspective is part of a larger effort on ICCT’s behalf to engage with its readership in order to further improve its ability to provide policy and practice relevant academically informed output.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Dec 2019
IS Hind: Exploring Possibilities

This Perspective presents what IS-Hind may entail based on the existing characteristics of IS and militant groups in the region.

Read more
Policy Brief | 27 Nov 2019
Nigeria: Community’s Perception of Legitimate Authority Matters for Rehabilitation and Reintegration

In this Policy Brief, ICCT Programme Manager Faisal Khan & Isioma Kemakolam present policy recommendations implementable by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs on community inclusion in R&R programming across Nigeria & the Sahel after conducting on the field research.

Read more
Policy Brief | 25 Nov 2019
Right-Wing Extremists’ Persistent Online Presence: History and Contemporary Trends

From early dial-up bulletin board systems to contemporary social media and messaging apps, this Policy Brief traces how Western right-wing extremists have exploited the power of the internet.

Read more
Research Paper | 20 Nov 2019
A comparative research study on radical and extremist (hate) speakers in European member states

This collaborated T.M.C. Asser - ICCT Research Paper analyses speech restrictions in Europe in the context of counter-terrorism policies.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Nov 2019
Revisiting the Theatre of Terror in CVE

In this Perspective, Joe Whittaker and Lisah Elsayed contend that strategic communications in CVE can sometimes have limited effectiveness or even worse, a detrimental effect, and offer ways to ensure credible undermining of violent propaganda.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Nov 2019
European countries are being challenged in court to repatriate their foreign fighters and families

In the Perspective, Tanya Mehra critically analyses the European approach to repatriating foreign fighters.

Read more
Policy Brief | 4 Nov 2019
A Schema of Right-Wing Extremism in the United States

In this Policy Brief, Sam Jackson presents a schema of three main forms of right-wing extremism in the United States in order to more clearly understand the landscape: racist extremism, nativist extremism, and anti-government extremism.

Read more
Report | 1 Nov 2019
Terrorism in the Age of Tech

In this Report for Clingendael's Global Security Pulse, Reinier Bergema maps out emerging trends and threats in the age of technology.

Read more
Policy Brief | 25 Oct 2019
Free movement threatened by terrorism: an analysis of measures proposed to improve EU border management

In this Policy Brief, Willemijn Tiekstra critically analyses current EU border management in the context of terrorist attacks that have hit the EU since 2015.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Oct 2019
Women in Islamic State: From Caliphate to Camps

In this Policy Brief, Gina Vale charts the evolution of women’s ideological commitment, adopted roles, and activism for Islamic State from the ‘caliphate’ to post-territorial internment camps.

Read more
Policy Brief | 7 Oct 2019
A Threat from Within? Exploring the Link Between the Extreme Right and the Military

In this Policy Brief, Daniel Koehler assesses the current and historical links between the extreme right and the military across Europe and North America.

Read more
Policy Brief | 4 Oct 2019
The Warning Signs are Flashing Red: The Interplay Between Climate Change and Violent Extremism in the Western Sahel

In this Policy Brief, Reinier Bergema and General (ret.) Tom Middendorp warn of how climate change opens a dangerous window of opportunity for terrorist organisations—as witnessed by the recent renewal of interest of the Islamic State in the Western Sahel.

Read more
Perspective | 30 Sep 2019
Remembering Terrorism: The Case of Norway

In the wake of a Utøya memorial being defaced with a swastika, Jeanine de Roy van Zwuijdewijn writes on the commemoration and memoralisation of terrorist events in the case of Norway and Anders Behring Breivik.

Read more
Policy Brief | 23 Sep 2019
Extreme-Right Violence and Terrorism: Concepts, Patterns, and Responses

In this policy brief, Tore Bjørgo and Jacob Aasland Ravndal highlight the distinctions between extreme-right violence and Jihadi violence and provide recommendations for practitioners working in this area.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Sep 2019
Hybrid Threats, Terrorism, and Resilience Planning

In this Perspective, William C. Banks and Katja Samuel warn of the hybrid threats posed by terrorists and other malicious groups to today's critical infrastructure interdependencies and vulnerabilities.

Read more
Research Paper | 9 Sep 2019
The Practitioner’s Guide to the Galaxy – A Comparison of Risk Assessment Tools for Violent Extremism

In this paper, the authors critically compare seven widely used risk assessment tools for violent extremism; better enabling policymakers and practitioners to navigate the often muddy, copyrighted, and expensive waters of the world of risk assessment.

Read more
Research Paper | 29 Aug 2019
Understanding Dutch converts to Islam: On turbulent trajectories and (non-) involvement in jihadist movements

New Research Paper by Fiore Geelhoed, Richard Staring, and Bart Schuurman provides an in-depth look at convert radicalization using extensive interviews.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Aug 2019
The Caliphate’s Women and Children—What Role can the Family Courts play? (Part 2)

In the Part 2, Dr. Rumyana van Ark focuses on such decision in the context of children who were en route to Syria before they and their parents were prevented from travelling further.

Read more
Report | 20 Aug 2019
Towards a Framework for Post-Terrorist Incident Communications Strategies

This joint paper synthesises research on post-incident communications from a range of fields – including terrorism, crisis communications, mass-shooter incidents, serial offenders, and suicide studies – to identify guidelines for the development of a post-terrorist incident communications framework.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 Aug 2019
Seven Years of Terror: Jihadi Organisations’ Strategies and Future Directions

In this paper, Asaad Almohammad employs Game Theory to perform a novel quantitative analysis of the global Salafi Jihadist Movement, and predict the future directions of the groups within.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Aug 2019
The Caliphate’s Women and Children – What Role can the Family Courts play? (Part 1)

In Part 1, of a two-part series, Dr. Rumyana van Ark (née Grozdanova) evaluates the role that family courts can play in de-radicalisation efforts through an analysis of the case of B, a sixteen year-old girl who attempted to leave the UK for Syria in 2014.

Read more
Policy Brief | 9 Jul 2019
Siege: The Atomwaffen Division and Rising Far-Right Terrorism in the United States

In this Policy Brief, Jacob Ware assesses the rising threat posed by far-right extremism in the United States, using the Atomwaffen Division as a case study.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Jun 2019
A Decade on from the 2008 Mumbai Attack: Reviewing the question of state-sponsorship

In this feature-length Perspective, Prem Mahadevan examines the findings related to the 2008 Mumbai Attack and explores the potential state involvement.

Read more
Perspective | 19 Jun 2019
Terrorism, Organised Crime, and Necessity

In this Perspective, Martin Gallagher explores the contradiction between ideological rhetoric and self-serving criminal practice that exists between organised criminals and terrorist groups.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Jun 2019
Post Brexit EU (In)Security

In this Perspective, Dr. Rumyana van Ark warns of the potential security and CT implications that have been thus far overlooked in Britain's exit from the EU.

Read more
Perspective | 3 Jun 2019
What Does the Islamic State’s Organisational Restructuring Tell Us?

In this Perspective, ICCT Associate Fellow Colin P. Clarke analyses the recent changes in IS' organisational structure and discusses how this relates to the transformation undergone by al-Qaeda.

Read more
Research Paper | 27 May 2019
Providing Psychosocial Care to Child Soldiers Living in Post-IS Iraq

In this Research Paper, Jan Ilhan Kizilhan discusses the need for better psychosocial support for former child soldiers living in post-IS Iraq as rehabilitation and reintegration measure.

Read more
Research Paper | 17 May 2019
Caliphate Soldiers and Lone Actors: What to Make of IS Claims for Attacks in the West 2016-2018

This ICCT Research Paper tries to find the links between lone actors and the organisation's main leadership through examining the changes in the ways IS has claimed credit for violent incidents in Western countries.

Read more
Perspective | 7 May 2019
The Global War on Terrorism, Domestic Imperatives, and Paramilitary Police Units: Lessons from South Asia

In this Perspective, ASM Ali Arshaf explores the emergence of paramilitary police units as a salient feature of the South Asian counterterrorism sphere and the complexity of it.

Read more
Research Paper | 24 Apr 2019
Branding a Caliphate in Decline: The Islamic State’s Video Output (2015-2018)

In this Research Paper, Pieter Nanninga argues that the Islamic State’s multi-faceted response to its setbacks as reflected in the decline of their video production might ensure the groups’ appeal to its target audience in the years to come.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Apr 2019
Germany and its Returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters: New Loss of Citizenship Law and the Broader German Repatriation Landscape

In this perspective, Kilian Roithmaier offers his thoughts on the recent agreement of the German Federal Government to introduce the statutory forfeiture of citizenship for German Foreign Terrorist Fighters and on the broader German repatriation landscape.

Read more
Policy Brief | 12 Apr 2019
The Role of Formers in Countering Violent Extremism

In this Policy Brief, Marina Tapley and Gordon Clubb examines the role former extremists and former combatants have in countering violent extremism (CVE).

Read more
Perspective | 10 Apr 2019
The Need to Maintain Control over Militant Jihadists

In this Perspective, ICCT Director Renske van der Veer and Edwin Bakker discuss the Dutch approach in counter-terrorism when dealing with returning foreign terrorist fighters.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Mar 2019
Learning the Lessons of Terrorist Failure: The Dogs that Didn’t Bark in Scotland and Wales

In this policy brief, Nick Brooke examined the benefits of studying failed terrorist campaigns to have a more informed counter-terrorism policy by using the case studies of Scotland and Wales.

Read more
Report | 19 Mar 2019
Destination Jihad: Italy’s Foreign Fighters

Using exclusive and original information provided by the Italian Ministry of Interior, 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.

Read more
Perspective | 14 Mar 2019
Jihadist ‘Responsibility to Protect’ Appeals: Propaganda Wars for the Moral High Ground

In this Perspective ICCT Associate Fellow Dr. Haroro J. Ingram uses the notion of 'responsibility to protect' to frame and understand modern jihadist appeals and their implications for radicalisation and mobilisation.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Mar 2019
British Citizenship Revoked, Bangladeshi Citizenship Uncertain – What Next for Shamima Begum?

In this perspective Dr. Rumyana van Ark discusses the revocation of Shamima Begum's nationality by the UK government and her prospects of appeal. More generally, she reflects on issues regarding statelessness and deprivation of nationality as a counter-terrorism measure.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Mar 2019
The Repatriation of Foreign Fighters and Their Families: Options, Obligations, Morality and Long-Term Thinking

In this Perspective, Tanya Mehra and Christophe Paulussen discuss the issue of (possible) repatriation of foreign fighters and their families, especially from Syria. They address several policy options by taking into account legal, moral and (long-term) security perspectives.

Read more
Policy Brief | 27 Feb 2019
Violence and Terrorism from the Far-Right: Policy Options to Counter an Elusive Threat

Using Germany as a main case study, Daniel Koehler argues that far-right violence has a potential risk of being misunderstood and under-classified as a form of political violence and terrorism. He also offers several recommendations on how to avoid this potentially resulting in an elusive threat.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Feb 2019
The Foreign Terrorist Fighter Repatriation Challenge: The View from Canada

Phil Gurski offers his thoughts on the issue of returning foreign fighters by discussing the different challenges countries are facing, taking a closer look at the situation in Canada.

Read more
Perspective | 19 Feb 2019
Reintegration in Indonesia: Extremists, Start-ups and Occasional Engagements

In this Perspective, Cameron Sumpter discusses the transitions back into society among recently released extremist prisoners in Indonesia.

Read more
Report | 4 Feb 2019
Fusion Centres in Six European Countries: Emergence, Roles and Challenges

In this report, an overview is provided of fusion centres in six European countries. It takes a closer look at their roles in the wider security and counter-terrorism landscape and what challenges they face.

Read more
Policy Brief | 24 Jan 2019
A Brief Primer on Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Methods in the Study of Terrorism

In this Policy Brief, Kurt Braddock emphasizes the importance of rigorous social scientific methods within terrorism research and describes methods of experimentation that can be put into practice to aid in the study of terrorism.

Read more
Report | 19 Dec 2018
ICCT: Year in Review 2018

To round up our year, we have compiled a document highlighting our 2018 achievements and a message from our Director. Relevant projects, events and publications are grouped together under the three thematic programmes; Define and Detect, Prevent and Protect, and Respond and Reflect.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Dec 2018
The Future of the Global Jihadist Movement After the Collapse of the Caliphate

In this Perspective Colin P. Clarke explores scenarios with regard to the future global jihadist movement. He concludes that its future is likely to resemble its past.

Read more
Perspective | 5 Dec 2018
Trends in Islamic State’s Online Propaganda: Shorter Longevity, Wider Dissemination of Content

In this Perspective, Laurence Bindner and Raphael Gluck assess the efficacy of IS’ sustained effort to spread its propaganda online, by looking at the types of platforms that are exploited and how long IS propaganda lingers online before it is removed.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Nov 2018
Don’t Just Counter-Message; Counter-Engage

ICCT Associate Fellow Nafees Hamid discusses current issues with counter-messaging and why strategic communication should place more emphasis on counter-engagement.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Nov 2018
Rethinking “Prison Radicalisation” – Lessons from the U.S. Federal Correctional System

This Perspective, written by George Washington University Research Fellow Bennett Clifford, looks at the necessity for U.S. prison counter-terrorism authorities to strengthen in-prison responses to prepare incarcerated extremists for release.

Read more
Perspective | 14 Nov 2018
Incitement to Terrorism – Treating the Symptoms or Addressing the Causal Malady?

In this Perspective Rumyana Grozdanova gives her thoughts on the Choudary case in the UK, cautioning to not only focus on more immediate restrictive responses to incitement.

Read more
Report | 6 Nov 2018
The Cost of Crying Victory: Policy Implications of the Islamic State’s Territorial Collapse

In this Report, Liesbeth van der Heide, Charlie Winter and Shiraz Maher analyse the continued risk posed the Islamic State (IS), in light of its territorial collapse. The authors present 5 conclusions to policy makers.

Read more
Perspective | 1 Nov 2018
Terrorist Financing and Virtual Currencies: Different Sides of the Same Bitcoin?

In this Perspective, Eva Entenmann and Willem van den Berg analyse the threat of Virtual Currency usage by terrorist organisations. They conclude that although Virtual Currencies are not used extensively by terrorist organisations currently, the potential for increased usage exists, and must be further explored.

Read more
Report | 25 Oct 2018
Global Evaluation of the European Union Engagement on Counter-Terrorism

In this report, commissioned by CT Morse, Dr. Andrew Glazzard and Dr. Alastair Reed assess the relevance, coherence, efficiency and impact of the European Union's external response to counter-terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Oct 2018
Countering Terrorism Through the Stripping of Citizenship: Ineffective and Counterproductive

Citizenship stripping is being used in Western Countries with increasing frequency. In this perspective, Dr. Christophe Paulussen explores why citizenship stripping is ineffective and counter-productive, and suggests academics, practitioners and policy makers engage more effectively to fully understand the complexity of the issue.

Read more
Policy Brief | 10 Oct 2018
To Help Defeat Boko Haram, the EU Should Push for Good Governance and Accountability

In this Policy Brief, EJ Hogendoorn suggests what the EU could do to address the drivers of the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria. Hogendoorn argues that although the EU has increased its humanitarian support to those affected by Boko Haram, it has thus far refrained from becoming to involved in a direct counter-terrorism response.

Read more
Report | 4 Oct 2018
Global Security Pulse September 2018: The Crime-Terrorism Nexus

This Global Security Pulse, published with The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies and the Clingendael Institute, tracks emerging security trends worldwide. This month's edition focuses on the crime-terror nexus, the rise of right wing extremism and FinTech abuse.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Sep 2018
Countering Islamist Radicalisation in Germany – A Guide to Germany’s Growing Prevention Infrastructure

Behnam T. Said and Hazim Fouad examine Germany's approach to preventing and countering violent extremism. This policy brief outlines the framework for prevention within Germany's federal system and gives an overview of the development of the German approach to CVE and PVE challenges.

Read more
Policy Brief | 19 Sep 2018
Women in Jihad: A Historical Perspective

Associate Fellow Seran de Leede explores the importance of women in contemporary jihadism. de Leede assesses how women's facilitative and supportive contributions have maintained and propagated jihadist ideology.

Read more
Research Paper | 7 Sep 2018
Nine Bullets for the Traitors, One for the Enemy: The Slogans and Strategy behind the Islamic State’s Campaign to Defeat the Sunni Awakening (2006 – 2017)

In this Research Paper, Dr. Craig Whiteside builds on the work of the ICCT Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications Project to examine how the Islamic State reshaped identity among Sunni Iraqis to delegitimize and discredit Sunni rivals of the Islamic State within its caliphate.

Read more
Research Paper | 29 Aug 2018
Revisiting the Relationship between International Terrorism and Transnational Organised Crime 22 Years Later

In this Research Paper, Alex P. Schmid explores the links between organised crime groups and terrorist groups since the mid 1990s, noting key similarities and differences between the two types of groups.

Read more
Report | 23 Aug 2018
It Takes a Village: An Action Agenda on the Role of Civil Society in the Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Those Associated With and Affected by Violent Extremism

This report examines the role of civil society organisation (CSOs) in the rehabilitation and reintegration of those associated with and affected by violent extremism. It builds on the work conducted by ICCT and the Global Center on Cooperative Security, together with four subregional partners over the past two-and-a-half years in Africa and South-East Asia.

Read more
Uncategorized | 21 Aug 2018
Reflecting on: Radicalisation, De-Radicalisation and Counter-Radicalisation

ICCT Research Fellow Prof. em. Alex P. Schmid reflects on his 2013 Research Paper "Radicalisation, De-Radicalisation, Counter-Radicalisation: A Conceptual Discussion and Literature Review" and offers suggestions for further reading.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Aug 2018
Exploring the Nuanced Nexus between Terrorism and Organised Crime

In this Perspective, Martin Gallagher uses his own experiences as a police officer in Scotland to outline factors he believe are crucial to understand the crime-terror nexus in its present form.

Read more
Uncategorized | 7 Aug 2018
Reflecting on: What Types of Media Terrorists Collect

ICCT Associate Fellow Donald Holbrook reflects on his 2017 Research Paper 'What Types of Media do Terrorists Collect? An Analysis of Religious, Political, and Ideological Publications Found in Terrorism Investigations in the UK".

Read more
Policy Brief | 12 Jul 2018
Returning Indonesian Extremists: Unclear Intentions and Unprepared Responses

In this Policy Brief, Cameron Sumpter analyses the impact of returning Foreign Fighters to Indonesia. Sumpter recommends that intrastate coordination of CVE and CT initiatives is required to clearly define the role of stakeholders.

Read more
Report | 4 Jul 2018
Investigating and Prosecuting Cases of the Nexus between Organised Crime and Terrorism: Best Practices and Lessons Learned for Practitioners

This workshop report reflects on the discussions held during the workshop on 'Investigating and Prosecuting Cases of the Nexus between Organised Crime and Terrorism: Best Practices and Lessons Learned for Practitioners' held in Doha, Qatar on the 24 April 2018. The workshop was co-hosted by ICCT, the Netherlands embassy in Qatar, the Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption Center (ROLACC) and by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Read more
Perspective | 2 Jul 2018
An Inconvenient Truth: Countering Terrorist Narratives – Fighting a Threat We Do Not Understand

In this perspective, Dr. Alastair Reed explores the existing knowledge gaps within the counter-narrative discourse. He advises caution should be exercised when implementing counter-narratives to avoid repeating mistakes, and rigorous standards should be enforced to ensure counter-narratives continue to be effective.

Read more
Uncategorized | 28 Jun 2018
Reflecting On: Uighur Foreign Fighters – An Underexamined Jihadist Challenge

As a service to ICCT’s readers, Colin P. Clarke and Paul R. Kan summarise their 2017 Policy Brief and offer suggestions for further reading.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Jun 2018
Assessing Europol’s Operation Against ISIS’ Propaganda: Approach and Impact

In this Perspective, Laurence Bindner and Raphael Gluck assess Europol's operation to disrupt ISIS propaganda. The operation, led by Belgian Federal Prosecutor’s Office and coordinated with six European countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, France, the Netherlands, Romania and the United Kingdom), as well as Canada and the United States, enables actors like Europol to target online sources of propaganda.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Jun 2018
Bringing (Foreign) Terrorist Fighters to Justice in a Post-ISIS Landscape Part III: Collecting Evidence from Conflict Situations

In this third, and final installment to her trilogy of Op-eds, Tanya Mehra emphasizes the importance of carefully collecting all relevant information and evidence from (post) conflict situations. Where investigators and prosecutors are unable to collect evidence from battlefields, any information that the military, NGO's and international mechanisms established by the Security Council collect, could be used as evidence in court.

Read more
Policy Brief | 6 Jun 2018
The Demise of the Islamic State and the Fate of Its Western Foreign Fighters: Six Things to Consider

In this Policy Brief, Dr. Lorne L. Dawson asks: with the military defeat of the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria, what will become of the remaining fighters? Will IS remain a significant terrorist threat, especially outside of Syria and Iraq? And, how will the demise of IS affect the future of jihadism in general?

Read more
Policy Brief | 1 Jun 2018
Citizenship and Ancestry of Belgian Foreign Fighters

In this Policy Brief, authors Pieter Van Ostaeyen and Guy Van Vlierden explore the backgrounds of Belgian foreign fighters and find that while most Belgian foreign fighters are linked to Morocco, the second most prominent ancestral link is Russia.

Read more
Perspective | 30 May 2018
An End to the War on Terrorism

In this Perspective, ICCT Research Fellow Phil Gurski argues why the 'war on terrorism' cannot be won.

Read more
Uncategorized | 22 May 2018
“That is what the terrorists want”: Media as amplifier or disrupter of violent extremist propaganda

In his Paris speech, Dr. Haroro J. Ingram addresses the ways in which the media can both amplify or disrupt violent extremist propaganda.

Read more
Policy Brief | 2 May 2018
Capacity-Building Challenges: Identifying Progress and Remaining Gaps in Dealing with Foreign (Terrorist) Fighters

In this Policy Brief, Walle Bos, Dr. Bibi van Ginkel and Tanya Mehra address capacity-building challenges in relation to the implementation of good practices in dealing with (returning) Foreign (Terrorist) Fighters.

Read more
Perspective | 25 Apr 2018
Do We Really Understand What the Comprehensive Approach is All About in Counter-Terrorism and Counter-Radicalisation?

In this Perspective, ICCT Research Fellow Stef Wittendorp examines recent developments in the "comprehensive" approaches to counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation that have been adopted in many European countries and the United States.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Apr 2018
Mali: Is It All About Terrorism?

In this Perspective, ICCT Visiting Fellow Elena Dal Santo expands our understanding of the multiple (and often overlooked) factors underlying conflict and instability in Mali.

Read more
Perspective | 11 Apr 2018
The Homecoming of Foreign Fighters in the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium: Policies and Challenges

In this Perspective, Rik Coolsaet and Thomas Renard comment on the risks posed by returning Foreign Terrorist Fighters, and examine how Germany, Belgium and The Netherlands have attempted to address these risks.

Read more
Research Paper | 10 Apr 2018
Cut From the Same Cloth? Lone Actor Terrorists Versus Common Homicide Offenders

In this Research Paper, Marieke Liem et al. provide a bivariate analysis of lone actor terrorists and common homicide offenders. Liem et al's findings problematise the classification of lone actors as an entity fundamentally different from the sample of single homicide offenders and call for future in-depth assessments of possible differences in homicidal drive.

Read more
Research Paper | 22 Mar 2018
Terrorism, Diplomacy, and State Communications

In countering the communications of terrorist organisations, states face a number of distinct challenges. Blatant lying can be at the expense of a state's authority, credibility, and instrumental effectiveness. Effective state communications need to be integrated, multidimensional and persuasive. Often they are anything but.

Read more
Research Paper | 12 Mar 2018
Islamic State’s English-language Magazines, 2014-2017: Trends & Implications for CT-CVE Strategic Communications

This paper provides a quick reference guide to IS’s English-language magazines released between June 2014 and September 2017 examining key themes and propaganda strategies deployed across three issues of Islamic State News, four issues of Islamic State Report, fifteen issues of Dabiq and thirteen issues of Rumiyah.

Read more
Policy Brief | 23 Feb 2018
Jihadists’ Grievance Narratives against France

A range of social, cultural, religious, economic, political, demographic drivers and identity factors converged to create a fertile ground for receptive radicals to emerge and break away from democratic values. Informed by these issues, this Policy Brief aims to identify avenues of further development for the French counter-terrorism strategic communication strategy.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 Feb 2018
ISIS Child Soldiers in Syria: The Structural and Predatory Recruitment, Enlistment, Pre-Training Indoctrination, Training, and Deployment

In this Research Paper, Asaad Almohammad uses a unique data-set made up of interviews and naturalistic observations from ISIS-held territories in Syria to explore the process of child recruitment and deployment.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Feb 2018
Jihadists Respond to Trump: “In al-Quds we meet”

In this Perspective, Pieter Van Ostaeyen and Tore Hamming analyse jihadists' response to Trumps recognition of Jerusalem. They argue that the majority of Jihadi groups call for the unification of Muslims worldwide and urge for a Jihad to liberate Jerusalem.

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Jan 2018
Prosecuting (Potential) Foreign Fighters: Legislative and Practical Challenges

In this Research Paper Christophe Paulussen and Kate Pitcher provide a critical assessment of the underlying legal frameworks and the concrete prosecutions of (potential) foreign fighters at the national level. The authors argue that magistrates and prosecutors should have a greater role in assessing whether actual prosecution or adjudication is appropriate in specific cases.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Jan 2018
Bringing (Foreign) Terrorist Fighters to Justice in a Post-ISIS Landscape Part II: Prosecution by Foreign National Courts

In this second installation of her trilogy of op-eds, Tanya Mehra LL.M explores how terrorist fighters can be prosecuted by foreign national courts. In this piece, Mehra analyses active nationality principle, passive nationality principle, territoriality principle and universal jurisdiction in the context of Syria and Iraq.

Read more
Perspective | 22 Dec 2017
Bringing (Foreign) Terrorist Fighters to Justice in a Post-ISIS Landscape Part I: Prosecution by Iraqi and Syrian Courts

In this Perspective, Tanya Mehra LL.M explores how foreign terrorist fighters can be brought to justice in the post-conflict landscapes of Iraq and Syria.

Read more
Policy Brief | 19 Dec 2017
The Effective Governance Gap in EU Counter-Terrorism and Stabilisation Policy for Somalia

Despite the fact billions of euros have been sent to Somali over the last two decades, the country remains a "failed state". This Policy Brief argues that to be more effective, the EU needs to become more adept at understanding local political dynamics.

Read more
Research Paper | 12 Dec 2017
The Fate of the Perpetrator in the Jihadist Modus Operandi: Suicide Attacks and Non-Suicide Attacks in the West, 2004-2017

While suicide attacks have long been considered the hallmark of jihadist terrorism, this Research Paper analyses a recent, dual trend towards suicidal and self-preserving attacks and discusses implications for the operational response to these attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Nov 2017
Marawi: Winning the War After the Battle

This Perspective discusses the drivers of violent conflict in the Philippines and argues that the policy response needs to take into account the underlying socio-economic motivations for militancy, rather than focusing on superficial claims of IS-affiliation.

Read more
Report | 27 Nov 2017
Action Agenda on Violent Extremist Offenders in Prison in Mali

This Action Agenda discusses the background of the conflict in Mali as well as some of the issues faced in Mali with regards to violent extremist offenders in prison. It provides recommendations and proposed activities in four action areas to address concerns and needs identified by ICCT and UNICRI throughout the initiatives implemented by both organisations so far.

Read more
Report | 22 Nov 2017
Countering Terrorist Narratives

This study provides an overview of current approaches to countering terrorist narratives. It highlights a number of policy recommendations to enhance the effectiveness of countering terrorism strategic communication.

Read more
Policy Brief | 15 Nov 2017
Uighur Foreign Fighters: An Underexamined Jihadist Challenge

Uighurs, specifically individuals of Turkic decent from China’s northwest province of Xinjiang, have become a noticeable part of the constellation of globally active jihadist terror groups. This Policy Brief explores the scope and scale of Uighur Foreign Fighters (UFF) activity in various locations, its implications and how their participation in global jihadist groups may evolve.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Nov 2017
Strengthening the United Nations’ Strategic Approach to Countering Terrorism

This Perspective argues that the recent creation of an Office of Counter Terrorism (OCT) to coordinate the overall United Nations response creates a fitting opportunity to redress the current fractious approach of the many entities within the UN system with counter-terrorism mandates.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Oct 2017
IS’s Appeal to Western Women: Policy Recommendations

In ICCT's latest Policy Brief, Kiriloi Ingram analyses how IS recruits Western women through a detailed qualitative narrative analysis of the contents of all fifteen issues of a Dabiq magazine. Ingram argues that counter-terrorism strategic communications must be paired with community based initiatives.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Oct 2017
Political Primacy, Strategic Risks, and ISIL after the Caliphate

In this Perspective, ICCT Associate Fellow, Craig Whiteside, analyses the effectiveness of Iraq's Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) in countering IS. He aims to find out to what extent CTS still possesses reasonable capacity to strategise further counter-terrorism acts in the post-caliphate fight against IS.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Oct 2017
Running A’maq: The Practice of Western Media Citing Islamic State Propaganda

This Perspective by Leon Bystrykh looks at journalists' use of material provided by the A'maq News Agency and asks whether Western media should be using A’maq; whether this a shortcut for investigative reporting, and whether, by citing its content, Western media may be reinforcing violent extremist propaganda.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Oct 2017
Has Countering the Financing of Terrorism Gone Wrong? Prosecuting the Parents of Foreign Terrorist Fighters

In her latest Perspective, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Bérénice Boutin questions the appropriateness of using broad counter-terrorism laws to prosecute parents of FTFs on the ground of terrorism financing.

Read more
Research Paper | 26 Sep 2017
What Types of Media do Terrorists Collect? An Analysis of Religious, Political, and Ideological Publications Found in Terrorism Investigations in the UK

ICCT Visiting Fellow Donald Holbrook’s Research Paper presents results from the study of media usage by convicted terrorists in the UK, shedding light on the nature of the media environment in which convicted terrorists operated prior to their arrest.

Read more
Policy Brief | 22 Sep 2017
The Failure of Prophecy and the Future of IS

In ICCT's latest Policy Brief, Dr. Lorne L. Dawson discusses the underlying vision of IS in propagating an apocalyptic struggle for its followers. He argues this cosmic struggle is characterised by the "caliphate legacy" which will survive despite military defeat.

Read more
Report | 14 Sep 2017
Correcting the Course: Advancing Juvenile Justice Principles for Children Convicted of Violent Extremist Offenses

This Report, prepared jointly by the Global Center and ICCT, puts forth guiding principles, recommendations, and considerations for the detention, rehabilitation, and reintegration of juveniles convicted of terrorism and violent extremism-related crimes in a manner that upholds the principles and safeguards of juvenile justice.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Sep 2017
The Importance of Politics in Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism in Fragile States

ICCT Visiting Fellow EJ Hogendoorn analyses the EU's efforts in countering violent extremism in Somalia and argues that, unless the EU becomes more adept at understanding local political dynamics, its expensive technical assistance and training programmes may have only temporary and limited impact.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Aug 2017
An Era of Near Unstoppable Terrorism?

In this Perspective, Phil Gurski discusses a new wave of vehicular terrorist attacks and argues that, rather than ramping up security and law enforcement measures, we should think more about resilience after the bomb goes off.

Read more
Research Paper | 28 Aug 2017
Children of the Caliphate: Young IS Returnees and the Reintegration Challenge

In this Research Paper, Liesbeth van der Heide and Jip Geenen assess what sets young or juvenile Islamic State (IS) returnees apart from adult returnees or young criminals and discuss the potential for rehabilitation.

Read more
Policy Brief | 22 Aug 2017
Countering Islamic State Messaging Through “Linkage-Based” Analysis

This Policy Brief focuses on a linkage-based analysis of a 2017 audio message by Islamic State spokesperson Abu Hasan al Muhajir and outlines potential insights into crafting effective content for competing and alternative messages.

Read more
Research Paper | 9 Aug 2017
Moderate Muslims and Islamist Terrorism: Between Denial and Resistance

In his latest Research Paper, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Alex P. Schmid examines various aspects of moderation in Islam including how Islamist extremists view moderate Muslims and how the latter resist the former, and argues for humanism to be the middle ground for moderates of all faiths and political persuasions.

Read more
Report | 26 Jul 2017
Learning from ISIS’s Virtual Propaganda War for Western Muslims: A Comparison of Inspire and Dabiq

In this Report, Dr. Haroro Ingram makes a comparative analysis of ISIS's Dabiq and Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula's Inspire magazines in order to 'reverse engineer' lessons for CT-CVE strategic communications.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Jul 2017
Tending Flowers in the Desert

Craig Whiteside examines how counterinsurgency tactics such as population expulsions, extrajudicial killings and mass incarceration, currently being used by the Iraqi government’s security forces, could impact on the future return of another “Islamic State” organisation.

Read more
Perspective | 14 Jul 2017
Tackling the Surge of Returning Foreign Fighters

With the defeat in Mosul and the noose tightening around IS' stronghold in Raqqa, the tide has begun to reverse and the steady trickle of returnees is beginning to pick up pace. This Perspective looks at ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ approaches to dealing with them.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Jul 2017
Winning the Blame Game: The Caliphate of Complete Disaster

The battle of Mosul marks more than a military victory for the anti-ISIL coalition: it is a crucial inflection point calling for an invigorated strategic communications campaign. ICCT Visiting Fellow, Craig Whiteside uses recent ICCT research by Ingram and Berger to highlight so-called Islamic State's dramatic failure to produce and secure a working caliphate - as a key theme to further develop.

Read more
Report | 4 Jul 2017
Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications: Back to the Future, Lessons from Past and Present

In this Report, Dr. Alastair Reed explores the lessons that can be learned from past communication experiences to aid Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications (CTSC) campaigns targeting the current propaganda threat from so-called “Islamic State”.

Read more
Perspective | 23 Jun 2017
The Sound of an Echo

In this Perspective, ICCT Research Fellow Joe Whittaker argues against the current indiscriminate use of the term “echo chamber” in relation to terrorism and radicalisation, but for its potential constructive use in relation to future research.

Read more
Report | 19 Jun 2017
Exploring the Role of Instructional Material in AQAP’s Inspire and ISIS’ Rumiyah

This Report examines instructional material used by Islamic State and Al Qaeda and outlines strategic communications recommendations to undermine this type of messaging and respond to directed and inspired attacks.

Read more
Report | 15 Jun 2017
Deconstruction of Identity Concepts in Islamic State Propaganda

This Report examines the construction of extremist identity in Islamic State propaganda using a linkage-based approach.

Read more
Report | 14 Jun 2017
Fear Thy Neighbor: Radicalization and Jihadist Attacks in the West

This report by Lorenzo Vidino, Francesco Marone and Eva Entenmann examines all jihadist-motivated terrorist attacks carried out in Europe and North America since the declaration of the Caliphate by the Islamic State group in June 2014.

Read more
Policy Brief | 8 Jun 2017
The Four Dimensions of the Foreign Fighter Threat: Making Sense of an Evolving Phenomenon

In this Policy Brief, Alastair Reed, Johanna Pohl and Marjolein Jegerings provide a concise outline of four main threats related to the issue of foreign fighters with the aim of clarifying the parameters of the phenomenon in its current manifestation.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Jun 2017
“Defeating IS Ideology” Sounds Good, But What Does It Really Mean?

In his latest Perspective ICCT Associate Fellow JM Berger argues for a more grounded approach to combatting extremist ideologies.

Read more
Research Paper | 22 May 2017
Losing the Plot: Narrative, Counter-Narrative and Violent Extremism

Dr. Andrew Glazzard argues that, if counter-narrative is to succeed in presenting an alternative to the propaganda of violent extremist groups, it is essential to bring the tools and techniques of literary criticism to the analysis of such propaganda.

Read more
Perspective | 4 May 2017
Digital Distractions: Analysis of Iraqi PMUs’ English Media Campaign

In this Perspective, Yousif Kalian and Omar Alhashani analyse the narrative propagated by Iraq's Popular Mobilization Units (PMUs) and argue that, despite the image of unity they project at the moment, the PMUs may shift towards a more sectarian outlook to remain relevant in Iraq's political future.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Apr 2017
What If Some Terrorist Attacks Are Unstoppable?

In his latest Perspective, ICCT Associate Fellow Phil Gurski argues that, as it is not possible to prevent all terrorist attacks and given their relative infrequency, the public should become more resilient so as to ensure terrorists do not achieve their goals of spreading fear and anxiety.

Read more
Research Paper | 21 Apr 2017
Extremist Construction of Identity: How Escalating Demands for Legitimacy Shape and Define In-Group and Out-Group Dynamics

J.M. Berger's Research Paper examines how mainstream movements become extremist through a process of identity construction. The paper presents a framework for analysing extremist texts and designing strategic counter-terrorism communications.

Read more
Report | 13 Apr 2017
Examining the Nexus between Organised Crime and Terrorism and its Implications for EU Programming

This CT Morse report examines the connection between organised crime and terrorism, and its implications for EU Programming.

Read more
Research Paper | 11 Apr 2017
The Strategic Logic of the “Linkage-Based” Approach to Combating Militant Islamist Propaganda: Conceptual and Empirical Foundations

Dr. Haroro Ingram's Research Paper examines the strategic logic of the “linkage-based” approach to combating militant Islamist propaganda by exploring the conceptual and empirical foundations of this approach.

Read more
Research Paper | 4 Apr 2017
Popular Mobilization Messaging

James Garrison’s Research Paper examines the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Unit’s (PMU) messaging on the organisation’s website and social media platforms to develop a more nuanced understanding of the PMU’s outlook, both present and future.

Read more
Research Paper | 28 Mar 2017
Can a Copycat Effect be Observed in Terrorist Suicide Attacks?

Nicholas Farnham and Dr. Marieke Liem look at how a copycat effect – established within the field of suicide studies – may manifest itself in terrorist suicide attacks, and take an exploratory approach in evaluating the prospect of incorporating open-data resources in future counter-terrorism research.

Read more
Report | 20 Mar 2017
The European Union’s Policies on Counter-Terrorism: Relevance, Coherence and Effectiveness

This new study commissioned by the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, and produced by PwC and the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism – The Hague (ICCT), analyses the coherence and effectiveness of the European Union’s counter-terrorism policy.

Read more
Perspective | 17 Mar 2017
IS Propaganda: Should We Counter the Narrative?

In this latest ICCT Perspective, Acting Director Dr. Alastair Reed looks at the use of counter-narratives in relation to IS propaganda and underlines the inadequacy of such a simplistic response.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Mar 2017
The Use of Deportation in Counter-Terrorism: Insights from the Italian Case

In his latest Perspective, ICCT Visiting Fellow Francesco Marone discusses the specificities of Italy's use of administrative deportation of foreign citizens as a counter-terrorism policy.

Read more
Report | 9 Mar 2017
Mental Health and the Foreign Fighter Phenomenon: A Case Study from the Netherlands

This seminar report by Christophe Paulussen, Janne Nijman and Karlien Lismont explores the suggested link between radicalisation, the foreign fighter phenomenon, terrorism and mental health problems, taking the situation in the Netherlands as a case study.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Mar 2017
The Trump Immigration Ban: Does it Make America Safer?

In his latest Perspective, ICCT Visiting Fellow Phil Gurski looks at Trump's immigration ban and discusses the reasons why it is unlikely to make the US safer.

Read more
Perspective | 27 Feb 2017
Disentangling the EU Foreign Fighter Threat: the Case for a Comprehensive Approach

Islamic extremists returning from fighting in Iraq and Syria pose a massive problem for European policymakers. But there are no quick fixes, argue Dr. Alastair Reed and Johanna Pohl in an article originally published as part of the RUSI Newsbrief Series.

Read more
Research Paper | 27 Feb 2017
War by Suicide: A Statistical Analysis of the Islamic State’s Martyrdom Industry

This Research Paper from ICCT Associate Fellow Charlie Winter explores IS’s use of suicide tactics over the course of 12 months – from 1 December 2015 to 30 November 2016 – and, through statistical evaluation, demonstrates its attacks are now primarily perpetrated by local operatives against military targets, marking a new phase of operationalisation for suicide warfare.

Read more
Research Paper | 15 Feb 2017
Public Opinion Survey Data to Measure Sympathy and Support for Islamist Terrorism: A Look at Muslim Opinions on Al Qaeda and IS

ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Alex P. Schmid's latest Research Paper explores what ‘sympathy’ and ‘support’ actually mean when it comes to jihadist terrorism and concludes that better instruments for measuring such sympathy and support are needed to inform counter-terrorist strategies.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Feb 2017
Should the FARC be on the EU List of Designated Terrorist Organisations?

Perspectives written by two students of the Terrorism and Counterterrorism course at Leiden University argue the case for and against the FARC being on the EU list of designated terrorist organisations.

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Jan 2017
Sketch of a Social Ecology Model for Explaining Homegrown Terrorist Radicalisation

In this Research Note, Dr. Lorne L. Dawson argues the merits of adopting an ecological approach to organising and extending our grasp of the social and social psychological factors influencing the career of potential jihadists.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Jan 2017
Why “Amnesty” Should Not Be Considered for Returning Foreign Fighters: A Response to Wells and Gurski

Responding to earlier Perspectives by Wells and Gurski, ICCT Programme Manager Eva Entenmann makes the case against offering plea-bargaining to returning foreign fighters and for more long-term and individualised approaches aimed at reintegration back into society.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Jan 2017
Suicide Tactics and the Islamic State

In this Perspective, ICCT Associate Fellow Charlie Winter discusses IS's use of suicide tactics and looks in some detail at the group’s three main suicide modi operandi: vehicle-borne IEDs, inghimas operations and human-borne IEDs.

Read more
Report | 19 Dec 2016
Foreign Terrorist Fighters: Trends, Dynamics and Policy Responses

This Report, which was developed for the Global Counterterrorism Forum's Foreign Terrorist Fighters Working Group, takes stock of the current trends and dynamics related to the foreign terrorist fighter phenomenon and identifies some of the gaps that still need to be addressed.

Read more
Research Paper | 16 Dec 2016
Administrative Measures against Foreign Fighters: In Search of Limits and Safeguards

This Research Paper analyses the increasing use of administrative measures in counter-terrorism and, based on a review of their use in the United Kingdom, France, and the Netherlands, and after identifying where their use might be justified and the impact of their use on the protection of human rights, concludes by recommending the establishment of appropriate limits and safeguards.

Read more
Perspective | 15 Dec 2016
Why We Cannot Profile Those Who Radicalise to Violence

In this Perspective, ICCT Visiting Fellow Phil Gurski compares violent extremists in Scandinavia to those in Canada and, noticing a divergence, discusses the implications for policy makers in dealing with violent extremism.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Dec 2016
Crime and Terror in Europe: Where the Nexus is Alive and Well

ICCT Associate Fellow, Colin Clarke, discusses the “crime-terror nexus” in Europe and examines how the problems of cooperation against terrorism across Europe and the rise of populism and nationalism may impact our ability to tackle this nexus.

Read more
Report | 12 Dec 2016
Rehabilitating Juvenile Violent Extremist Offenders in Detention

Developed for the Global Counterterrorism Forum’s Detention and Reintegration Working Group, this paper puts forth guiding principles, recommendations, and considerations for the detention, rehabilitation, and reintegration of juveniles convicted of terrorism and violent extremism-related crimes in a manner that upholds the principles and safeguards of juvenile justice.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Dec 2016
Promises of Paradise: IS Propaganda towards Women

In this Perspective, Louisa Tarras-Wahlberg discusses the seven clear promises delivered to women in official IS propaganda - promises that paint a picture of a young nation state resembling a paradise on earth - and argues that affected European states need to counter IS paradisiac claims while providing better opportunities for young women at home.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Nov 2016
“How to Slaughter the Disbelievers”: Insights Into IS’ Instructional Video

As so-called Islamic State (IS) suffers devastating losses of land, personnel and resources across Iraq and Syria, it may seem that its end is near. ICCT Visiting Fellow Haroro Ingram argues to the contrary, explaining how IS’ recent video “You must fight them o muwahhid” offers yet another indicator that the group is again strategically transitioning.

Read more
Perspective | 25 Nov 2016
Could Repatriating Foreign Fighters Make Europe Safer?

This Perspective by David Wells discusses the benefits of a foreign fighter plea bargain as a policy option that proactively reduces the threat through ensuring immediate incarceration of returning foreign fighters.

Read more
Policy Brief | 22 Nov 2016
A “Linkage-Based” Approach to Combating Militant Islamist Propaganda: A Two-Tiered Framework for Practitioners

This Policy Brief outlines a “linkage-based” approach to combating militant Islamist propaganda tailored for practitioners in order to help them synchronise campaign planning and message design.

Read more
Research Paper | 15 Nov 2016
Lighting the Path: the Evolution of the Islamic State Media Enterprise (2003-2016)

This Research Paper develops a history of so-called Islamic State’s media department by examining primary documents and other media throughout its existence. Based on this history, six observations are made aimed at helping in the efforts to combat IS and its inevitable future imitators.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Nov 2016
What Does the Trump Presidency Mean for the “War on Terrorism”?

Visiting Fellow Phil Gurski discusses potential consequences of the election of Donald Trump as US president, focusing specifically on what his election means for counter-terrorism and US strategic interests abroad.

Read more
Research Paper | 7 Nov 2016
Repressing the Foreign Fighters Phenomenon in Western Europe: Towards an Effective Response Based on Human Rights

This Research Paper explores the repression of the foreign fighters phenomenon and terrorism more generally in Western Europe and argues that only a response based on human rights will be effective in countering this global problem in the long run.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Nov 2016
Should Governments Offer Amnesty to Returning Foreign Fighters?

Visiting Fellow Phil Gurski discusses three challenges in offering amnesty to returning foreign fighters: determining the true intent of returnees, determining what acts they were involved in, and dealing with the public reaction.

Read more
Perspective | 25 Oct 2016
Managing Risk in the Fight Against IS

As the battle for Mosul rages, the West faces a key turning point in the struggle against the so-called Islamic State (IS). The strategic choices made in the coming months to counter the risk posed by IS are likely to have ramifications that will be felt – good or bad – for years to come. As such it is an apt time to reflect on the lessons learned from past mistakes.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Oct 2016
How Islamophobia Makes Us Less Safe

In this Perspective, ICCT Visiting Fellow Phil Gurski argues that Islamophobia is a type of ignorance and prejudice, a fear of the Other, against which we must fight in the interests of national security.

Read more
Report | 17 Oct 2016
Towards a European Position on the Use of Armed Drones? A Human Rights Approach

This report examines targeted killings in light of human rights law; the precise requirements of transparency, oversight and accountability; and European countries’ human rights obligations when assisting other countries in drone strikes.

Read more
Report | 11 Oct 2016
Foreign Fighters in Their Own Words: Using YouTube as a Source

Analysing YouTube videos, Kim Mans and Reuben Tuitel provide new insight into the phenomenon of foreign fighters, answering basic questions such as: ‘who are these foreign fighters?’, ‘why do these foreign fighters travel to Syria?’ and ‘where will they go next when the fight is over?’, and thereby adding to so-called thick descriptions in foreign fighter research.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Oct 2016
Rumiyah, Issue 2 (English): Rallying the “True Believers” as Hardship Purifies the Ranks

At least for the moment, it seems Rumiyah is part of a contracting Islamic State (IS) propaganda campaign characterised by telling shifts in key messaging themes. In this analysis of Rumiyah’s second issue, Haroro J. Ingram argues that these trends reflect important changes in IS’s propaganda strategy.

Read more
Perspective | 7 Oct 2016
The EU’s ‘Security Union’: A Bridge Too Far?

In this Perspective, Wittendorp examines issues surrounding the EU's and specifically the Commission's new ‘Security Union’: what is the broader context in which it emerged, what are the assumptions informing it, and what trouble might lie ahead?

Read more
Perspective | 5 Oct 2016
Bangladesh: Islamic State Province or Battlefield of Words?

While the increasing influence of Islamic State in Bangladesh has attracted global attention, this Perspective looks at the agendas of various actors implicated in recent attacks.

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Sep 2016
Deciphering the Siren Call of Militant Islamist Propaganda: Meaning, Credibility & Behavioural Change

This Research Paper analyses how strategies of meaning, credibility and behavioural change are deployed in militant Islamist propaganda and concludes by outlining crucial lessons for understanding both the siren call of militant Islamist propaganda and counterterrorism strategic communications design.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Sep 2016
Italy’s Jihadists in Syria: The Case of Maria Giulia Sergio (“Lady Jihad”)

Examining the case study of one Italian woman who travelled to Syria, Dr. Marone sheds light on some of the particularities concerning Italy’s jihadists, including the relevance of foreign recruitment networks operating within the country and the prevalence of individual pathways of radicalisation over group mechanisms.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Sep 2016
The Use and Abuse of Administrative Measures against FTFs in France

In this Perspective, Dr. Boutin argues that, while there can be valid reasons to apply so-called 'administrative measures' to foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) in France and elsewhere, it is essential for policy makers to give further consideration to issues of human rights in the application of such measures.

Read more
Research Paper | 16 Sep 2016
The Turner Legacy: The Storied Origins and Enduring Impact of White Nationalism’s Deadly Bible

The Turner Diaries, the infamous racist dystopian novel by neo-Nazi William Luther Pierce, has inspired more than 200 murders since its publication in 1978. This paper documents the books that directly and indirectly inspired Turner and examines the extensive violence that the novel has inspired.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Sep 2016
Juvenile Violent Extremist Offenders: Peer Pressure or Seasoned Soldiers?

As governments devise ways to address the issue of foreign fighters and terrorism at home and abroad, the phenomenon of juvenile violent extremist offenders is becoming increasingly important and the question of what to do with them once they are apprehended more and more pertinent.

Read more
Report | 6 Sep 2016
ICCT Research Report NATO Project: Transitioning from Military Interventions to Long-Term Counter-Terrorism Policy

This NATO research project focused on assessing how military interventions can best prepare the ground for an effective long term counter-terrorism policy, looking at the interventions in Libya, Afghanistan and Mali.

Read more
Research Paper | 23 Aug 2016
Italy’s Jihadists in the Syrian Civil War

This exploratory ICCT Research Paper examines the current extent of Italy’s foreign fighters in Syria through four case studies.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Aug 2016
Promoting Disengagement from Violent Extremism

This Policy Brief lays out a multi-tiered framework for counter-terrorism strategic communications programmes and concrete evaluation of programme results.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Aug 2016
More Than “Jihadi Brides” and “Eye Candy”: How Dabiq Appeals to Western Women

Kiriloi M. Ingram argues for a more nuanced understanding of IS’s appeal to Western women, in particular of the five categories of female archetypes into which IS tend to group women.

Read more
Perspective | 8 Aug 2016
Egypt’s Aviation Security since the Metrojet Bombing

Nine months after the downing of the Russian A321 civilian aircraft, Metrojet flight 9268, in the Sinai Peninsula, Egyptian authorities still need to address the challenges relating to the vulnerability of airport facilities and to managing the fear of the traveling public.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Aug 2016
Dabiq, Issue 15: A Call to Islamic State’s Enemies as the Caliphate Crumbles

The latest issue of Dabiq celebrates a summer of terror in the West, speaks directly to Islamic State’s (IS) “crusader” enemies with a mix of condemnations and ultimatums, and is filled with appeals to converts. But what Dabiq’s latest issue doesn’t say is just as telling.

Read more
Perspective | 1 Aug 2016
How (not) to Manage Fear after Terrorist Attacks

Addressing recent attacks in Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel was widely criticised for repeating her mantra ‘we can do this’, facing a population increasingly worried by Islamist terrorism. This Perspective analyses the tension between fear management and polarisation, challenging existing assumptions on how to communicate to citizens after terrorist attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Jul 2016
Jabhat al Nusra Splits From al Qaeda

After years of rumours, Syrian jihadist group Jabhat al Nusra is expected to sever its longstanding affiliation with al Qaeda at any moment. ICCT Associate Fellow J.M. Berger analyses the implications of the impending split on the future evolution of jihadist ideology and strategy.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Jul 2016
The Nice Attack and the Limits of Security Responses

In this Op-Ed, ICCT Research Fellow Bibi van Ginkel compares the profile of the perpetrator of the Nice Attacks to existing research on Foreign Fighters, pointing to the limits of the security-centered approach France has adopted.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Jun 2016
The CTSC Project in the Media

ICCT Fellows and Associates have written articles, op-eds and interviews on the topic of Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications:

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 Jun 2016
Lessons from History for Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications

As part of the Counter-Terrorism Strategic Communications Project, this Policy Brief lays out key policy-relevant lessons for developing effective counter-terrorism strategic communications.

Read more
Policy Brief | 17 Jun 2016
Converts and Islamist Terrorism: An Introduction

This Policy Brief provides an overview of what is known about converts’ involvement in homegrown jihadism and the foreign fighter phenomenon, analysing data from various Western countries.

Read more
Research Paper | 1 Jun 2016
A Brief History of Propaganda During Conflict

This Research Paper explores the history of propaganda during conflict and draws out key lessons for improving counter-terrorism strategic communications.

Read more
Research Paper | 26 May 2016
Making CVE Work: A Focused Approach Based on Process Disruption

This Research Paper develops a narrow approach to Countering Violent Extremism (CVE), focusing on disengagement and the disruption of recruitment.

Read more
Research Paper | 18 May 2016
Links between Terrorism and Migration: An Exploration

This Research Paper explores and questions some assumed causal links between terrorism on the one hand and (forced and irregular) migration on the other. It also offers recommendations that can go some way towards disentangling the issues of (refugee) migration and terrorism.

Read more
Policy Brief | 10 May 2016
Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent: A New Frontline in the Global Jihadist Movement?

This Policy Brief sheds light on and increases understanding of al-Qaeda Central's (AQC) latest affiliate al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS).

Read more
Perspective | 10 May 2016
Countering Violent Extremism in the Kurdistan Region in Iraq

Now that the Islamic State appears to be losing ground, and the most imminent threat for the Kurdistan Region in Iraq seems to be over, the time has come for the Kurdistan Regional Government to develop a plan to counter violent extremism.

Read more
Policy Brief | 9 May 2016
Prosecuting Foreign Terrorist Fighters: What Role for the Military?

This policy brief focusses on the difficulties of prosecuting Foreign Terorrist Fighters, and the role that the military can play in assisting prosecutors in collecting evidence and arresting suspects in countries of destination.

Read more
Report | 2 May 2016
Understanding Lone Wolves: Towards a Theoretical Framework for Comparative Analysis

This report outlines a comparative theoretical framework of lone actor terrorists and related non-terrorist lone actor phenomena, with the aim of enabling policy transfer with regard to detection, prevention and treatment.

Read more
Report | 28 Apr 2016
Toolkit for Mental Health Experts and Social Workers in Dealing with Lone-Actor Terrorism

This paper presents three sets of recommendations offering guidance for mental health practitioners and social workers to prevent lone actor terrorism by sharing information, fostering engagement and awareness and a multi-agency approach.

Read more
Perspective | 22 Apr 2016
Breivik’s Life-Long Battle for Attention

ICCT's Research Fellows Liesbeth van der Heide and Daan Weggemans offer their insights on Anders Behring Breivik's quest for lifelong attention, following his court case victory against the Norwegian government.

Read more
Report | 15 Apr 2016
Transitioning From Military Interventions to Long-Term Counter-Terrorism Policy

Analysing the cases of Libya, Afghanistan and Mali, these three Reports assess how military interventions can best prepare the ground for an effective long-term counter-terrorism policy.

Read more
Research Paper | 14 Apr 2016
Salafi Jihadist Violence in Egypt’s North Sinai: From Local Insurgency to Islamic State Province

This Research Paper analyses the development of militancy in Egypt's North Sinai governorate, focusing in particular on Ansar Bayt al Maqdis/Wilayat Sinai and how it has changed from the 2011 uprising to the present day.

Read more
Research Paper | 1 Apr 2016
The Foreign Fighters Phenomenon in the EU – Profiles, Threats & Policies

In this Report commissioned by the Netherlands National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism (NCTV), ICCT analyses the numbers and characteristics of foreign fighters, how the EU and Member States assess the threat as well as their policy responses regarding security, preventive and legislative measures.

Read more
Research Paper | 31 Mar 2016
The Islamic State’s Global Propaganda Strategy

This Research Paper aims to analyse in depth the global propaganda strategy of the so-called “Islamic State” by looking at the methods through which this grand strategy is carried out as well as its objectives.

Read more
Report | 29 Feb 2016
Personal Characteristics of Lone-Actor Terrorists

This Research Project Report analyses personal variables of perpetrators of lone actor terrorism, resulting in a number of policy recommendations. It is the fifth publication in the Countering Lone-Actor Terrorism (CLAT) project.

Read more
Report | 29 Jan 2016
Countering Violent Extremism and Terrorism in Tunisia

Report on the workshop on effective implementation of UN Security Council Resolutions 1624 (2005) and 2178 (2014) that took place in Tunisia in November 2015. This workshop was convened by ICCT, UN CTED and HSC.

Read more
Research Paper | 28 Jan 2016
Beneath the Apparent State of Affairs: Stability in Ghana and Benin

In this Clingendael paper, ICCT Fellows Knoope and Chauzal explore how Ghana and Benin are dealing with politics, identity and societal stress, in response to the Sahel crisis and regionalisation of Boko Haram.

Read more
Policy Brief | 19 Jan 2016
Rehabilitation for Foreign Fighters? Relevance, Challenges and Opportunities for the Criminal Justice Sector

This Policy Brief aims to inform the current debate on integrating rehabilitation into the overall approach to foreign fighters by highlighting the challenges and opportunities within the criminal justice sector response.

Read more
Research Paper | 23 Dec 2015
Foreign (Terrorist) Fighters with IS: A European Perspective

In this Research Paper, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Alex P. Schmid analyses the widely diverging foreign fighter estimates. Having identified push and pull as well as resilience factors that facilitate or inhibit young Muslims joining ISIS, he argues that stopping them from departing to Syria is not enough; political solutions have to be sought.

Read more
Report | 27 Nov 2015
Report: NATO Workshop on Violent Extremism in Central Asia

New Report: On 2 and 3 September 2015, the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism – The Hague (ICCT) and the Center for Security Programs (CSP) in Astana convened a NATO Advanced Research Workshop titled 'Violent Extremism in Central Asia: Indicators, Trends and Possible Responses', with support of the NATO Science for Peace and Security Programme. The main aim of the workshop was to identify to what extent radicalisation and violent extremism are on the rise in the region, what can and should be done about it and how actors can advance on a countering violent extremism (CVE) agenda in the future.

Read more
Report | 27 Nov 2015
Report: NATO Workshop on Counter-Terrorism in the MENA Region

New Report: From 6 to 7 October 2015, the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT), Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies (ACPSS) and Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ convened a NATO Advanced Research Workshop in Brussels. This workshop was titled ‘(Counter-)terrorism in the post-Arab Spring context’ and supported by the NATO Science for Peace and Security Programme.

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 Nov 2015
Paris: 11/13/15 – Analysis and Policy Options

In this Policy Brief, experts of ICCT and Clingendael shed light on some of the pressing questions that currently take central stage in the debates following the Paris attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Nov 2015
So What Does IS Want Us to Do Next…?

In this Op-Ed, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Alastair Reed outlines three potential responses that the so-called "Islamic State" may want to provoke with the Paris attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 14 Nov 2015
Mumbai-Style Attacks in Paris

Once more, after the attacks on Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish supermarket in January, Paris has been shaken by a series of terrorist attacks. Contrary to the events earlier this year, the 13 November events were much more complex and coordinated, reminding us of the Mumbai 2008 attacks.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Nov 2015
What Next for the Sinai?

In this Op-Ed, ICCT Director Mark Singleton elaborates on how to read into the assumed bombing of the Russian Metrojet 9628 flight by the Sinai franchise of the so-called "Islamic State" on 31 October 2015.

Read more
Research Paper | 10 Nov 2015
Jihadist Foreign Fighter Phenomenon in Western Europe: A Low-Probability, High-Impact Threat

In this Research Paper, Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker and Jeanine de Roy van Zuijdewijn explore the threat that returning foreign fighters may pose to Western societies. By analysing four distinct areas where the impact of this phenomenon is most visible, the authors determine the extent of the threat in physical, political and social terms.

Read more
Policy Brief | 27 Oct 2015
Foreign (Terrorist) Fighter Estimates: Conceptual and Data Issues

In this Policy Brief, Dr. Alex P. Schmid discusses various definitions of Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTFs) by disaggregating the “foreign”, “terrorist” and “fighters” elements of the UN Security Council definition in resolution 2178 (2014). Subsequently, an attempt is made to bring structure to the widely diverging estimates of the numbers of foreign fighters and their origins.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Oct 2015
Reintegrating Violent Extremist Offenders: Policy Questions and Lessons Learned

In this article published in the framework of George Washington University's Program on Extremism, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Tinka Veldhuis discusses rehabilitation and reintegration programmes for violent extremist offenders.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 Oct 2015
Fickle Foreign Fighters? A Cross-Case Analysis of Seven Muslim Foreign Fighter Mobilisations (1980-2015)

In this Research Paper, Dr. Isabelle Duyvesteyn and Bram Peeters study seven conflicts that in the past 35 years have triggered Muslims worldwide to leave their home country and become a so-called foreign fighter.

Read more
Research Paper | 1 Sep 2015
Operation ‘Serval’: A Strategic Analysis of the French Intervention in Mali, 2013–2014

In this Article published by Leiden University's Centre for Terrorism and Counterterrorism, ICCT Research Fellow Sergei Boeke and Bart Schuurman discuss the French military intervention in Mali, launched in 2013.

Read more
Policy Brief | 27 Jul 2015
Motives and Considerations of Potential Foreign Fighters from the Netherlands

In this Policy Brief, Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker and Peter Grol studied several cases of potential foreign fighters. These observations form the basis of policy suggestions that could contribute to the prevention policy within the framework of the “Comprehensive Action Programme to Combat Jihadism” of the Dutch government.

Read more
Research Paper | 1 Jul 2015
Identifying foreign terrorist fighters: The Role of Public-Private Partnership, Information Sharing and Financial Intelligence

In this Research Paper, Visiting Research Fellow Tom Keatinge asks what barriers exist to greater partnership and information sharing between the security authorities and the financial-services industry in tackling terrorism.

Read more
Research Paper | 4 Jun 2015
Challenging the Narrative of the “Islamic State”

Dr. Alex Schmid identifies a dozen narrative themes of ISIS and discusses them from different angles in an attempt to show vulnerabilities and point the way towards developing convincing counter-arguments.

Read more
Perspective | 26 May 2015
Austria’s Reformed Law on Islam – a Model for Europe?

In this Commentary, Dr. Alex Schmid discusses the recently passed reformed law on Islam in Austria and the possibilities these reforms give for developing a so-called "European Islam".

Read more
Research Paper | 26 May 2015
The Role of the Military in Securing Suspects and Evidence in the Prosecution of Terrorism Cases before Civilian Courts: Legal and Practical Challenges

In this Research Paper, by Dr. Bibi van Ginkel and Dr. Christophe Paulussen, the role of the military when performing law enforcement activities in terms of collecting evidence and/or securing suspected terrorists is analysed.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 May 2015
European Female Jihadists in Syria: Exploring an Under-Researched Topic

The number of young Western women travelling abroad to join the "Islamic State" (IS) continues to increase. However, little is known about these women, including their motivations and roles within organisations such as IS. This Background Note provides preliminary answers and explain what is known so far.

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Apr 2015
Towards a European Position on Armed Drones and Targeted Killing: Surveying EU Counter-Terrorism Perspectives

In this Research Paper, Jessica Dorsey and Dr. Christophe Paulussen gauge the extent to which European Union Member States share the position of the United States on armed drones and targeted killings.

Read more
Policy Brief | 26 Apr 2015
Pathways of Foreign Fighters: Policy Options and Their (Un)Intended Consequences

In this Policy Brief, Dr. Alastair Reed, Jeanine de Roy van Zuijdewijn and Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker look at the different pathways foreign fighters could take once they have arrived in Syria or Iraq.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Apr 2015
Responding to Foreign Fighters: A Quick Overview for People with Little Time

In this Commentary Dr. Christophe Paulussen gives a quick snap-shot of the foreign fighters phenomenon, which is a complex and multi-faceted issue.

Read more
Research Paper | 31 Mar 2015
Responding to Cyber Jihad: Towards an Effective Counter Narrative

Research Fellow Dr. Bibi van Ginkel analyses the role of the internet and social media in processes of radicalisation.

Read more
Perspective | 30 Mar 2015
The (In-)Effectiveness of “Deterrence” as an Instrument Against Jihadist Terrorist Threats

In this commentary, ICCT Research Fellow Dr. Bibi van Ginkel discusses deterrence as an instrument against terrorism: does implementing new policies and laws deter potential terrorists or does this have little effect?

Read more
Perspective | 18 Mar 2015
Understanding Instability in Libya: Will Peace Talks End the Chaos?

In this Commentary, Ms. Floor El Kamouni-Janssen and Ms. Iba Abdo discuss the complex situation in Libya.

Read more
Perspective | 3 Mar 2015
Do-it-yourself Islam? Views on the Religious Credibility of the IS

In this opinion piece, Erwin van Veen and Iba Abdo analyse the religious credibility and message of the "Islamic State".

Read more
Research Paper | 26 Feb 2015
Dignity and Dawn: Libya’s Escalating Civil War

This Research Paper provides a detailed examination of the armed conflict in Libya between the Operation Dignity and Libya Dawn military coalitions.

Read more
Research Paper | 5 Feb 2015
Mali’s Long Road Ahead

The authors discuss recent military operations in Mali and warn against the temptation to treat the various jihadists as a homogenous group.

Read more
Perspective | 22 Jan 2015
Accountability and Transparency in the United States’ Counter-Terrorism Strategy

In this Commentary, Research Fellow Jessica Dorsey responds to the recently released CIA "Torture Report" and discusses the accountability and transparency in the counter-terrorism strategy of the United States.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Jan 2015
Paris 7-8 January: Darkness in the City of Light

In this Op-Ed, Mark Singleton discusses the downside of increased securitisation and the need for a comprehensive approach to counter-terrorism.

Read more
Policy Brief | 24 Dec 2014
Addressing the Foreign Terrorist Fighters Phenomenon From a European Union Perspective

A Policy Brief based on the expert meeting at the European Union to discuss the implications of UN Security Council Resolution 2178 (2014) on foreign fighters and to explore responses to the threat foreign fighters pose.

Read more
Report | 7 Nov 2014
UN Security Council Resolution 2178 (2014): Challenges and Opportunities for EU Policy

Meeting Note of an expert meeting to discuss appropriate and effective responses to the threat of Foreign Terrorist Fighters (FTFs).

Read more
Perspective | 4 Nov 2014
About Fear, Terrorism and What Is Really New

Associate Fellow Peter Knoope discusses whether the "Islamic State" group (IS) represents a new form of terrorism, one that deviates from previous terrorist organisations.

Read more
Report | 4 Nov 2014
Practices and Reflections on Development, Security, and Peace in context of Violent Extremism and Terrorism

The side event to the UN Counter-Terrorism Strategy Review includes a short introduction of the multi-stakeholder approach to prevent and mitigate extreme violence, and closes with recommendations.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Nov 2014
Identity Issues and Alliance Dilemmas in the Middle East

Peter Knoope discusses the potentially long term involvement of Europe in the complex conflict in Syria and Iraq.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Nov 2014
Testing the Validity of US Self-Defence Arguments against the Khorasan Group in Syria

This Commentary tests the validity of the specific US self-defence arguments against the Khorasan group in Syria, examining both Article 51 of the UN Charter and customary international law on this issue.

Read more
Perspective | 4 Nov 2014
The New Security Council Resolution 2178 on Foreign Terrorist Fighters: A Missed Opportunity for a Holistic Approach

This Commentary reviews the new UN Security Council Resolution 2178 (2014) on foreign terrorist fighters.

Read more
Report | 23 Sep 2014
Developing Effective Counter-Narrative Frameworks for Countering Violent Extremism

The "Islamic State" (IS), with its violent attacks, strong uprise and even stronger media campaign, shows the need for an effective counter-narrative strategy to prevent the spread of violent extremism and radicalisation.

Read more
Research Paper | 6 Aug 2014
Transitioning from Military Interventions to a Long-Term Counter-Terrorism Policy

The past two decades have shown that it is arguably easier to start a military intervention than to end one. In this Research Paper, Sergei Boeke looks at exit strategies from a counter-terrorism perspective.

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 Jun 2014
Returning Western Foreign Fighters: The Case of Afghanistan, Bosnia and Somalia

In this Background Note, Jeanine de Roy van Zuijdewijn and Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker investigate three historical cases of foreign fighting: Afghanistan (1980s), Bosnia (1990s) and Somalia (2000s).

Read more
Perspective | 5 Jun 2014
UK Measures Rendering Terror Suspects Stateless: A Punishment More Primitive Than Torture

In the latest policy measure against the perceived threat of foreign fighters, the UK passed a law that could result in terrorism suspects becoming stateless. Dr. Christophe Paulussen and Dr. Laura van Waas analyse the bill.

Read more
Research Paper | 12 May 2014
Violent and Non-Violent Extremism: Two Sides of the Same Coin?

This Research Paper seeks to obtain a clearer understanding of what “Islamist extremism” entails.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Apr 2014
Terrorism Research and Government

This Commentary argues that governments should trust non-governmental actors to a greater extent with sensitive information to ensure the most informed responses to terrorism.

Read more
Policy Brief | 10 Apr 2014
Afghan Women and the Taliban: An Exploratory Assessment

In this Policy Brief, Research Fellow Seran de Leede examines the position of women in Afghanistan towards the Taliban to a better understanding of the role of women in (countering) political violence in Afghanistan.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Apr 2014
The Return of Europe’s Foreign Fighters

This Commentary argues that the problem of returning foreign fighters to Europe will only increase and policymakers should look towards civil society and local communities for solutions.

Read more
Research Paper | 27 Mar 2014
Security in the Sinai: Present and Future

This Research Paper analyses the current threat emanating from the Sinai Peninsula by mapping the various violent actors and their international connections.

Read more
Research Paper | 18 Feb 2014
Ansar al-Sharia in Tunisia’s Shift to Jihad

This Research Paper analyses the likely future of the conflict between the most significant salafi jihadist group in the country, Ansar al-Sharia in Tunisia, and the Tunisian state.

Read more
Research Paper | 16 Jan 2014
Towards a Theory of Fear Management in the Counter-Terrorism Domain

The Paper identifies and analyses governmental approaches to managing fear in relation to terrorist incidents.

Read more
Research Paper | 14 Jan 2014
Al Qaeda’s “Single Narrative” and Attempts to Develop Counter-Narratives

In this Research Paper efforts by governments and non-governmental bodies to challenge al Qaeda's narrative are discussed by Research Fellow Dr. Alex P. Schmid .

Read more
Research Paper | 16 Dec 2013
Dealing with European Foreign Fighters in Syria: Governance Challenges and Legal Implications

The increasing amount of foreign fighters brings the possibility that returnees have radicalised which makes them a potential threat.

Read more
Perspective | 3 Dec 2013
Mokhtar Belmokhtar: A Loose Cannon?

This Commentary discusses the announcement of a new jihadist organisation the Al-Mourabitoun.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Dec 2013
The Syrian Foreign Fighters Problem: A Test Case from The Netherlands

A court in The Netherlands recently convicted two men who wanted to travel to Syria to join the jihad. This Commentary analyses the two judgements and their wider implications.

Read more
Uncategorized | 13 Nov 2013
Supporting Curriculum Development for the Rule of Law

ICCT, together with the T.M.C. Asser Institute, drafted a guidance paper to support the curriculum development of the to be established International Institute for Justice and the Rule of Law.

Read more
Research Paper | 14 Oct 2013
Nigeria’s Troubled North: Interrogating the Drivers of Public Support for Boko Haram

In this Research Paper, Former Visiting Fellow Akinola Olojo examines the key drivers of public support for Boko Haram in northern Nigeria.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Sep 2013
Setting the Record Straight: Reversing the Burden of Proof Back to Normal in EU Terrorist Listing Cases

The Court of Justice of the EU made its final judgement in the case of Mr. Kadi: what does this mean for the burden of proof in placing individuals on sanctions list and for the implementation of the UN sanctions list?

Read more
Research Paper | 23 Aug 2013
The Anders Behring Breivik Trial: Performing Justice, Defending Democracy

This Research Paper examines to what extent the Breivik trial attained the goals of criminal justice and also aims to determine if the trial contributed to the need for closure in society.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Aug 2013
AQAP: A Local Problem, A Global Concern

Intelligence information about Al Qaeda in the Arabic Peninsula (AQAP) caused a security stir in the past weeks leading to embassy closures and evacuation of personnel in Yemen.

Read more
Perspective | 19 Aug 2013
Al Qaeda during the Elections in Mali: The Dog that Did Not Bark

This Commentary looks at the elections and explains why various terrorist groups missed the opportunity to disrupt the democratic process in Mali.

Read more
Policy Brief | 13 Aug 2013
The Need for a United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Coordinator

In this Policy Brief, Dr. Howard Stoffer emphasises the need for a global UN Counter-Terrrorism Coordinator to oversee the smooth and efficient running of all UN counter-terrorism related activities.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Jul 2013
The End of Radicalisation?

Following the Boston Marathon and Woolwich attacks in 2013, some commentators proclaimed the end of the concept of radicalisation as the root cause for terrorism. Dr. Alex Schmid takes a closer look at this claim.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Jul 2013
Terrorism in North Africa After Benghazi: The Jihadist Regional Outlook

What implication has the Arab Spring had on jihadist movements in northern Africa? Daveed Gartenstein-Ross looks at regional developments and the relationship between countries of dawa (missionary work) and lands of jihad.

Read more
Policy Brief | 27 Jun 2013
Moving Terrorism Research Forward: The Crucial Role of Primary Sources

Conducting empirical research in the field of terrorism is not an easy task: gaining access to police files, interviewing (former) terrorists or accessing intelligence information can be arduous.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Jun 2013
Engendering Counter-Terrorism in Northern Nigeria

This Commentary examines the role of women in the ongoing conflict in Northern Nigeria.

Read more
Research Paper | 28 May 2013
Ansar al-Sharia Tunisia’s Long Game: Dawa, Hisba and Jihad

Associate Fellow Dr. Daveed Gartenstein-Ross examines the activities, organisation and possible future of Tunisia's largest salafi jihadist organisation: Ansar al-Sharia Tunisia (AST).

Read more
Perspective | 23 May 2013
Mediation, Bounties and Amnesty for Boko Haram: A Deadlock of Priorities

This Commentary discusses the available options in Nigeria and the contradictions of state policy thus far.

Read more
Perspective | 23 May 2013
Creating a Police State Mentality? Stronger Visual Surveillance of Public Places after the Boston Bombings

During the first US Congressional hearing on the Boston bombings and in media reports, Boston’s police commissioner, Mr. Edward F. Davis III, advocated for stronger visual monitoring of public spaces.

Read more
Report | 9 May 2013
Additional Guidance on the Role of Psychologists/Psychology in Rehabilitation Programmes

This Meeting Note reports on the expert workshop on The Role of Psychology in Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Violent Extremist Offenders, which was convened together with the Hedayah centre.

Read more
Report, Research Paper | 16 Apr 2013
Boundaries of the Battlefield: A Critical Look at the Legal Paradigms and Rules in Countering Terrorism

This Research Paper is a detailed report of a two-day symposium by the same title, which was convened in The Hague in January 2013.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Apr 2013
Destination Jihad: Why Syria and not Mali

This Commentary analyses the exodus of young European jihadists that are inundating Western intelligence services.

Read more
Research Paper | 27 Mar 2013
Radicalisation, De-Radicalisation, Counter-Radicalisation: A Conceptual Discussion and Literature Review

Based on an in-depth literature review, Research Fellow Dr. Alex P. Schmid explores the terms "radicalisation", "de-radicalisation" and "counter-radicalisation" and the discourses surrounding them in greater detail.

Read more
Perspective | 21 Mar 2013
Ansar al-Sharia Tunisia’s International Connections

The strategy of the most prominent jihadist organisation in Tunisia, Ansar-al-Sharia Tunisia (AST), has thus far mainly focussed on dawa (missionary work) instead of violent acts.

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 Mar 2013
The Nexus between Security and Development

Research Fellow Dr. Bibi van Ginkel and Clingendael Senior Research Fellow Ivan Briscoe analyse the relationship between the development and counter-terrorism sectors in light of the changing nature of terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 13 Mar 2013
Mali and the Narco-Terrorists

In the Francophone press, jihadists and rebels in Northern Mali are frequently referred to as "narco-terrorists". This Commentary discusses the use of such terminology and its implications.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Feb 2013
The Need for More & Structural Data Analysis in Detention and Rehabilitation of Extremist Offenders

The authors suggest that increased and structural data analysis is essential to produce evidence-based policies that are tailored to countering violent extremism.

Read more
Perspective | 19 Dec 2012
A Long Journey to Justice: El-Masri and the First Case against the Practice of Extra-ordinary Renditions

The first judgement against a state (Macedonia) for its involvement in the CIA's extra-ordinary rendition programme was handed down earlier this week. Dr. Bibi van Ginkel analyses the implications of the ECHR judgement.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Nov 2012
The Real Risk of Torture Testimony in Terror Trials: The Case of Abu Qatada

Last week's decision against the extradition of Muslim cleric Abu Qatada in the UK was a controversial one. What does the case mean for evidence obtained by torture, human rights, extradition and anticipatory justice?

Read more
Perspective | 15 Nov 2012
Beware of High Hopes: Counterterrorism and the Negotiation Paradox

In their Commentary, Bart Schuurman and Dr. Isabelle Duyvesteyn examine peace negotiations in conflicts between governments and terrorist organisations.

Read more
Perspective | 23 Oct 2012
The Declining Legitimacy of the Pakistan Taliban

In this Commentary, former Director Peter Knoope argues that the shooting of Malala Yousafzai by the Pakistani Taliban further decreases its legitimacy.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Sep 2012
The 22nd of July Trial Reaches its Final Stage

What is the impact of the final verdict in the Anders Behring Breivik trial? How does it affect the coping mechanisms in society and are the goals of criminal justice achieved?

Read more
Research Paper | 30 Aug 2012
Towards the Intelligent Use of Intelligence: Quis Custodiet ipsos Custodes?

Dr. Bibi van Ginkel examines the role of the exchange of intelligence between states, the applicable human rights framework, and the dilemmas involved.

Read more
Research Paper | 28 Aug 2012
Testing the Adequacy of the International Legal Framework in Countering Terrorism: The War Paradigm

In this Research Paper, Dr. Christophe Paulussen explores whether the current international legal framework is sufficiently equipped to effectively deal with the threat of terrorism and counter-terrorism practices.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Aug 2012
Engaging Civil Society in Countering Violent Extremism

In this Research Paper Dr. Bibi van Ginkel takes an in depth look at how multi-lateral institutions engage with civil society to counter violent extremism.

Read more
Research Paper | 17 Aug 2012
Strengthening the Role of Victims and Incorporating Victims in Efforts to Counter Violent Extremism and Terrorism

Following terrorist attacks, governments are often quick to express their solidarity with victims but as the memory of a terrorist atrocity fades, attention for the victims also ebbs away – in both government and society.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Aug 2012
Terrorism Prevention as Situational Crime Prevention

In the latest Commentary, Dr. Alex Schmid argues that exploring the utility of situational crime prevention - widely used in the field of criminology - maybe the future of terrorism prevention.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Jul 2012
Al Qaeda Plot in Europe? Intelligence as Evidence in the Düsseldorf Terror Cell Trial

This Commentary discusses the trial against four terror suspects of the so-called Düsseldorf terror cell.

Read more
Research Paper | 19 Jul 2012
Forecasting the Unpredictable: A Review of Forecasts on Terrorism 2000 – 2012

The Research Paper aims to provide a general review of publications on the future of terrorism by academics, think tanks and government agencies over the past ten years.

Read more
Research Paper | 25 Jun 2012
Blind Spot? Security Narratives and Far-Right Violence in Europe

This Research Paper discusses the challenges of countering far-Right political violence.

Read more
Research Paper | 21 Jun 2012
Through the Militant Lens: The Power of Ideology and Narratives

This Research Paper explores violent extremist “narratives” within the Indonesian context by interviewing a convicted terrorist and one currently undergoing trial.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Jun 2012
Countering Violent Extremism: a Promising Response to Terrorism

In early April 2012, the first conference of the Working Group for Countering Violent Extremism was attended by representatives from the 29 countries which are part of the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum.

Read more
Perspective | 23 Apr 2012
The Anti-Islamist: Anders Behring Breivik’s Manifesto

In this Commentary, 2012 Visiting Research Fellow Dr. Arun Kundnani analyses Breivik's ideology as contained in his 1,500-page manifesto, 2083 – A European Declaration of Independence.

Read more
Perspective | 18 Apr 2012
Anders Breivik: A Terrorist on Trial

This Commentary analyses the trial against Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian violent extremist who carried out bomb and gun attacks that left 77 people dead last year.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Apr 2012
Impunity for International Terrorists? Key Legal Questions and Practical Considerations

This Research Paper discusses several of the key questions related to the subject of impunity of international terrorists, taking both a fundamental and a more practical approach within the context of international law.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Mar 2012
Intelligence Failures in France? The Complex Reality of Information Sharing

In the aftermath of the terrible attacks in Southern France, French intelligence agencies are facing calls for an investigation into alleged intelligence failures.

Read more
Perspective | 16 Mar 2012
The US NDAA and its Controversial Counter-Terrorism Provisions

This Commentary reviews Sections 1021 and 1022 of the "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012" (NDAA 2012) – probably the act’s most controversial counter-terrorism provisions.

Read more
Perspective | 12 Mar 2012
The Internet as Hiding Place of Jihadi Extremists

It is no secret that violent extremists – whether Jihadists or Neo-Nazis – make intensive use of the internet as a platform for discussion, planning, propaganda and recruitment. Dr. Bibi van Ginkel discusses different approaches to counter this.

Read more
Perspective | 5 Mar 2012
Containing al Qaeda in Africa

In recent years commentators have begun to suggest that Africa will be the next haven for al Qaeda, with al Shabaab, al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb and Boko Haram all having affiliations with al Qaeda in varying degrees.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Mar 2012
Designing Rehabilitation and Reintegration Programmes for Violent Extremist Offenders: A Realist Approach

In this Research Paper, Dr. Tinka Veldhuis makes an argument for a Realist approach to rehabilitation and reintegration programmes for violent extremist offenders in prison.

Read more
Policy Brief | 20 Feb 2012
A Fear Management Approach to Counter-Terrorism

In this Policy Brief, Research Fellows Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker and Dr. Tinka Veldhuis explore the dynamics of fear in response to terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 10 Feb 2012
Strategic Re-Orientation Underlined by Two New International Counter-Terrorism Initiatives

Ten years after 9/11, we seem to be witnessing an important turning point in the strategic thinking about counter-terrorism policies and measures.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Feb 2012
Counter-Terrorism, Technology and Transparency: Reconsidering State Accountability

In this Discussion Paper, Dr. Quirine Eijkman discusses the use of surveillance, storage of personal information, biometrics, satellite technology and other forms of ICT technology used in the fight against terrorism and the risks that come along with them.

Read more
Perspective | 8 Nov 2011
Surveillance Cameras against Terrorism: Is More Accountability Required?

Since 9/11 and the London and Madrid bombings a wide variety counter-terrorism measures have been taken, including the implementation of many technical tools.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Aug 2011
Incitement to Terrorism: A Matter of Prevention or Repression?

Dr. Bibi van Ginkel analyses the relevant research and policy question related to the criminalisation of incitement to terrorism.

Read more
Perspective | 29 Jul 2011
Lone Wolves and their Enabling Environment

In this Commentary, Dr. Beatrice de Graaf and Eelco Kessels MA emphasise that, although we might label Anders B. Breivik a lone wolf, he certainly does not perceive himself to be a loner operating in complete isolation.

Read more
Perspective | 28 Jul 2011
A Fair and Public Trial for the Norwegian Terror Suspect

The trial of Anders Behring Breivik posed many questions, one of them being if the hearings should be in public or behind closed doors.

Read more
Perspective | 26 Jul 2011
The Picture of Terrorism in Europe after the Norway Attacks: Terrorist Threat Remains High and Diverse

The incorrect, one-sided and partly over-optimistic picture of "the" terrorist as a Muslim male connected to al Qaeda was smashed to pieces by the deadly attacks in Norway, Prof Dr. Edwin Bakker argues in this Commentary. Terrorism in Europe is – and always has been – a very diverse phenomenon.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Jul 2011
Preventive Counter-Terrorism Measures and Non-Discrimination in the European Union: The Need for Systematic Evaluation

This study briefly discusses the concept of preventive counter‐terrorism, after which it will go on to consider the use of preventive counter‐terrorism measures in the EU as well as their potential discriminatory side‐effects.

Read more
Perspective | 1 Jul 2011
Towards a Population-Centric Strategy: Indonesian Experience in Countering Islamist Radicalism and Terrorism

In this guest Commentary, Dr. Noorhaidi Hasan looks at terrorism and violent extremism developments in Indonesia, as well as the government's policies.

Read more
Perspective | 4 May 2011
The Death of Mastermind Osama bin Laden: Whose Justice?

In his statement, US President Barack Obama stipulated that the targeted operation he authorised was aimed at bringing Osama bin Laden “to justice”.

Read more
Perspective | 4 May 2011
The End of an Age of Terror? The Death of Osama bin Laden

After its irrelevance in the Arab Spring and the death of its iconic and unifying leader and the lack of a strong successor with similar stature is the ultimate blow to al Qaeda.

Read more
Perspective | 6 Apr 2011
Not Very Inspiring: Al Qaeda’s Reaction to the ‘Tsunami of Change’ in the Middle East

Shaykh Anwar Al-Awlaki in the Islamist Glossy "Inspire Magazine", is on the defence, trying desperately to convince his readers – and probably himself – of his interpretation of the events unfolding.

Read more
Uncategorized | 15 Mar 2011
Terrorists on Trial: A Performative Perspective

On 30 March 2011, ICCT hosted an Expert Meeting applied a performative perspective to three well known and recent trials in different parts of the world.

Read more
Perspective | 3 Mar 2011
Al Qaeda’s Final Dance: a Deadly Tango for Two

The popular uprisings in Northern Africa and the Middle East are showing us, professionals involved in the field of counter-terrorism, and our politicians the best way forward in our struggle against political violence.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Mar 2011
Compatible or Incompatible? Intelligence and Human Rights in Terrorist Trials

This Research Paper focuses on the special procedures of Canada, France, the Netherlands and the UK for the use of intelligence in terrorism-related court cases.

Read more
Research Paper | 12 Feb 2011
Why Communication and Performance are Key in Countering Terrorism

In this Research Paper, Prof. Dr. Beatrice de Graaf emphasises the importance of effective communication and performance in the fight against terrorism and the fear it aims to induce.

Read more
Research Paper | 3 Feb 2011
Report ICCT International Launch Conference

Over 200 high-level international experts from various governments, counter-terrorism agencies, academic institutions and NGOs gathered to discuss the status of counter-terrorism.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Feb 2011
Joint Investigation Teams: Added Value, Opportunities and Obstacles in the Struggle against Terrorism

This Research Paper is an updated version of the discussion paper that was prepared for the ICCT Expert Meeting on ‘Joint Investigation Teams: Added Value, Opportunities and Obstacles in the Struggle against Terrorism’.

Read more
Perspective | 31 Jan 2011
Why the People of Tunisia and Egypt Confirm the Bankruptcy of al Qaeda’s Tactics

There is one profound conclusion missing in most of the news reports and expert opinions analysing the political, social and/or historical reasons for and consequences of the events taking place in Egypt and Tunisia.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Jan 2011
Kadi-Judgement Revisited: Shaken, not Stirred

In this Commentary, Dr. Bibi van Ginkel analyses the proceedings of the Kadi trial and the impact of the most recent ruling.

Read more
Perspective | 24 Dec 2010
The Dutch Hofstad Group: A Terrorist Organisation after All?

Dr. Quirine Eijkman analyses the retrial and discusses the consequences of the verdict for counter-terrorism measures.

Read more
Perspective | 20 Dec 2010
Legal Reforms and Counter-Terrorism: Without Public Support, Changing the Rules Can Be Costly

In this Commentary, Bart Schuurman argues that legislation specifically designed to address terrorism-related violence is a powerful instrument that governments can use in the struggle against violent extremism.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Nov 2010
Lone Wolves: How to Prevent this Phenomenon?

In this Research Paper Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker and Prof. Dr. Beatrice de Graaf examine the rise of terrorist acts perpetrated by individuals.

Read more
Perspective | 2 Oct 2010
The Sting Within; Understanding the Effects of Terror

In a new Commentary, Dr. Mark Dechesne, Senior Researcher at Campus The Hague / Leiden University explores the effects of terrorist attacks. What does terrorism do to people? What happens if people are terrorised?

Read more
Perspective | 17 Sep 2010
9/11 Nine Years On

The Commentary tries to explain the reasons for the (delayed) outburst of anti-Islamic emotions and demonstrations in various parts of the world.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Aug 2010
Terrorists and the Rule of Law: Member of Hofstad Group Expresses Faith in Dutch Judicial System

This Commentary analyses the recent announcement of a convicted member of the Dutch jihadist Hofstad group, who stated that he from now on accepts the judicial system and is certain that he will receive a fair trial.

Read more
Perspective | 19 Jul 2010
Will the Appointment of an Ombudsperson Improve the Due Process Standards of the Heavily Criticised UN Terrorist Listing and De-listing Procedure?

This Commentary analyses whether the appointment of an ombudsperson pursuant to Security Council Resolution 1904 will in fact improve the due process standards of the UN terrorist listing and de-listing procedure.

Read more
Perspective | 9 Jun 2010
Decrease in Global Terrorism Threat: Now Look for Means to Sustain It

In the first ICCT Commentary, Prof. Dr. Edwin Bakker reflects upon the conclusions by Insurance Company Aon that counter-terrorism efforts have caused a decrease in the global terrorism threat level.

Read more
Research Paper | 2 Mar 2010
Use of Diplomatic Assurances in Terrorism-related Cases: In search of a Balance between Security Concerns and Human Rights

Dr. Bibi van Ginkel and Federico Rojas analyse the different policies on diplomatic assurances in countries that are representative of a trend and clarify the criteria that have to be fulfilled before assurance may be used.

Read more