KUALA LUMPUR – About 80 percent of Daesh terror group followers identified since 2013 until 2015, were aged 40 and below.
Dr Ahmad El Muhammady, Islamic Studies and Political Science lecturer at the International Islamic University Malaysia, said this group comprised social media users who were easily influenced by the Daesh propaganda.
“It appears to be a trend where youths are exposed to a lot of information sources through the social media and don’t know how to differentiate the right and wrong.
“Peer influence also plays a major role when someone who doesn’t know anything helps a friend who is involved in Daesh. That person is not aware he is being made used of to purchase items to make explosives to bomb his own country.”
He said this to reporters after giving a talk on ‘Malaysia in Facing the Triangle of Conflicts in Southeast Asia’ in conjunction with the Malaysian Institute of Defence and Security (MIDAS) Lecture at Wisma Perwira, Malaysian Armed Forces, herebhee n qu ATM.
Ahmad said most of the followers of Daesh comprised youths while the “otai” or old-timers became leaders of the terror group at the highest level.
“The youths involved lack good religious guidance that could help them differentiate between the good and bad. And all information received are not screened first.”
He said the youths involved in Daesh were mostly those marginalised from society and this gave the militant group the opportunity to recruit them.
Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter-Terrorism Division principal assistant director, Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay had last Sunday said that police had arrested 257 people between April 2013 and Oct 30, this year for being involved in Daesh militant activities in the country and most of them had been sentenced to imprisonment. – BERNAMA