Radicalization threat discussed in London

Sept. 14, 2011 at 12:27 PM
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LONDON, Sept. 14 (UPI) -- Home-grown radicalization is part of the broad al-Qaida strategy to attack the United States and its allies, a U.S. lawmaker told British officials.

U.S. Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, testified before a British parliamentary panel on the threat posed by home-grown terrorists.

"The spate of recent homegrown terrorist attacks within the United States and abroad has reinforced the unquestionable fact that homegrown radicalization is part of al-Qaida's strategy to continue attacking the United States and its allies," he said in his prepared remarks.

Members of the European Parliament in an earlier resolution identified radicalization as "the most significant and continuous long-term threat." British Home Secretary Theresa May in July statements said London would address the ideological aspects of the domestic threats.

King said London is facing a "much deeper problem" than in the United States.

"They have no-go zones, hostile neighborhoods in the U.K. where it is pretty dangerous for non-Muslims to go," he said in a statement. "We have nothing at all like that."

King was rapped for a series of hearings looking into radicalization in the U.S. Muslim community.

U.S. President Barack Obama unveiled a strategy in August meant to address violent extremism in the United States. The plan notes that Washington would be "ill-suited" to meddle in select groups in society were radicalization could take place.

King said that while he welcomed the measure, he was worried the president was too delicate in dealing with Muslim-American groups.

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