Thousands of IS files help countries identify sympathizers

An Islamic State (IS) terrorist group defector has shared computer files that contain information about foreign fighters that have gone to Syria. These files were obtained by counter terrorism experts in Germany, England and other European countries. These profiles of fighters were created from the interviews conducted by IS when these fighters arrived in Syria. The interviewers apparently asked 23 questions related to background and motivation of the fighters.

German officials feel that these files will be an important source to identify returning IS fighters. They consider these files genuine and an important source of information. The files contain profiles of over 22,000 fighters from 51 countries around the world. The files contain detailed profiles including blook group and marital status. Germany’s interior minister, Thomas de Maiziere, said the revelation could help track down militants wherever they are working and lead to their prosecution.

Sky News quoted a former counter-terrorism chief of Britain’s MI-6 Secret Intelligence Service, Richard Barrett, who said the stolen IS files appear to be “an absolute gold mine of information of enormous significance.” U.S. Army Colonel Steve Warren, spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State, said the information could identify and track down IS’s foreign fighter networks.

Media reported that files came from a source named Abu Hameed. He was a member of Free Syria Army opposition movement but later joined Islamic State terrorist group.

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