There are 50,000 Europeans fighting for the Islamic State, according to the director of India’s National Investigation Agency.
Sharad Kumar told the Hindustan Times he heard the number at a conference of European police chiefs in September which discussed counter-terrorism and de-radicalization. India was invited due to the international nature of the terrorist threat.
“During a discussion on the threat posed by the ISIS in Europe, we were told that there were around 50,000 Europeans who have joined the ranks of the terror outfit,” Kumar said.
“It makes Europe very vulnerable to terror attacks from these fighters who can come back any day and who also know major cities there from the back of their hands.”
The European Police Chiefs Convention was held on September 23 and 24 and briefed 300 police representatives from 50 countries on the terror threat posed by the Islamic State and related groups.
The National Investigation Agency is the federal counter-terrorism body established by the Indian government in the wake of the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
For more information about the Islamic State and its recruitment of foreign fighters from around the world, see Clarion Project’s Special Report: The Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL)