Most radicalism linked to Internet: UK lawmakers

Internet service providers should do more to prevent web from playing a role in fueling extremism, UK lawmakers said.

London: Internet service providers should do
more to prevent the web from playing a role in promoting
violent extremism, British lawmakers said in a report
published Monday.

The Internet has become an important factor in nurturing
the extremist threat, surpassing universities and prisons as a
place where dangerous ideas are developed and traded, the
lawmakers said.

"We remain concerned by the growing support for nonviolent
extremism and more extreme and violent forms of far-right
ideology," the Home Affairs Committee said in its report,
which follows a nine-month inquiry.

Britain has been involved in a number of terror plots. On
July 7, 2005, four suicide bombers killed 52 people in
synchronised attacks on London`s transit system.

A year later, US and British intelligence officials
thwarted one of the largest plots yet, a plan to explode bombs
on nearly a dozen trans-Atlantic airliners.

Last week, four British men fuelled by the words of a
US-born Muslim cleric pleaded guilty to involvement in an
al Qaeda inspired plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange at

The Home Affairs Committee said the Internet "was now one
of the few unregulated spaces where radicalisation is able to
take place" and played a greater role in promoting violence
than prisons, universities or places of worship, a pointed
rebuke to other government officials who had identified those
areas as high risk.

"More resources need to be directed to these threats and
to preventing radicalisation through the Internet and in
private spaces," said Keith Vaz, chairman of the committee.

Lawmakers urged Internet service providers to be more
active in monitoring the sites they host and work with the
government on developing a code of practice to remove any
material that promotes violence extremism.

But civil liberties campaigners slammed the suggestion,
saying courts not "unaccountable officials" should decide when
to block online content.