West Struggles to Halt Flow of Citizens to War Zones

(New York Times) Eric Schmitt and Michael S. Schmidt - For more than a decade, Western governments have struggled to stem the flow of their citizens traveling to fight in war zones in Muslim countries, increasing surveillance of those who have expressed an interest in joining extremists, creating computer programs to track suspicious travel patterns and taking other measures. But the number of people traveling abroad to fight continues to grow, with about 1,000 militant recruits joining the fight in Syria and Iraq each month, according to recent U.S. government figures. In the U.S., about 150 people have tried or actually gone to fight in Syria. Altogether, about 18,000 foreign combatants, including 3,000 Europeans and other Westerners, have traveled to fight in the region since the Syria conflict erupted in 2011, according to American intelligence estimates. More than 500 veterans of the Syria campaign have returned to Europe.

2015-01-15 00:00:00

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