Sinister migrant trafficking across the Mediterranean
5 Dimension Consultants based in Dubai have direct access to information from extremist organisations operating across the region. They have provided Security News Desk with information that the Islamic State in Libya is using its stronghold, the port town of Sirte, to launch a new business venture, which is to smuggle illegal immigrants into Europe in exchange for cash.
Aimen Dean their Managing Director said, “This is not just their latest fund raising venture, there is a sinister motive behind the venture. We know that two Egyptian individuals made the journey last month to IS controlled Sirte after they were told by professional human traffickers in Egypt that the IS in Sirte offer easier, safer and cheaper sea passages to Europe, than other trafficking groups.”
“The two Egyptian brothers embarked on the journey sending their third brother in Egypt a detailed account of the journey into and out of Sirte, including their final destination in Italy. The details they gave, despite their low level of awareness of the trafficking industry, indicate that the IS is indeed running a relatively small but well organized illegal immigration operation” he added.
Dean continued “The details offered to individual include an IS offer to give everyone the chance to stay and fight for IS in Libya. If they insist on leaving to Europe then all illegal immigrants are given one week of religious education to safeguard them against Europe’s temptations.
After the religious education course they are divided into groups to be looked after by “Tunisians with commandos’ physical attributes, deeply religious and fluent in Italian and French” (sic) who then would accompany them on the perilous journey to Europe.”
Dean commented that “The fact that the IS started this venture to smuggle Egyptians, Algerians, Tunisians, Syrians and Sub-Saharan Africans shows how the group is utilizing their strategic position in Sirte to generate income. In addition, the IS is also using this illegal immigration sea route to sneak their own operatives into Europe. The implications of the IS organizing illegal immigration operations into Europe on European security cannot be underestimated.”
Dean concluded “The two brothers account of reasonable fees charged by the IS while attracting professional smugglers to come and work for them for a good income clearly shows that financial gain is secondary to the IS in Libya as far as their illegal immigration operation is concerned.”
According to the UNHCR the numbers of migrants are:
13,500 Migrants rescued 10-17 April
1,600 Feared to have died attempting the crossing so far this year
- 35,000 Migrants have arrived from North Africa in 2015
- 218,000 Estimated to have crossed the Mediterranean in 2014
- 3,500 Migrants died attempting the crossing last year
Of these the vast majority are male and trying to check into their backgrounds can prove extremely difficult.
James Abernethy, a former British Intelligence officer said “It would be relatively easy for IS or any group infiltrate small numbers of their operatives into the migrant groups and even with screening when they land, it would be very difficult to detect them. As the groups are eventually dispersed throughout Europe it is unlikely the authorities in different countries would have the resources to track all of them.”
“However, it is unlikely that the “Tunisians with commandos’ physical attributes, deeply religious and fluent in Italian and French” from Mr Deans report would actually land with the migrants as they would stand out but stories from many of the migrant boats talk of the smugglers abandoning ship during the journey” Abernethy added.
He concluded, “Mr Deans assessment of the potential danger to European security posed by a small number of these illegal migrants is completely accurate. The time to do something is now, before the numbers grow further. The tide of human tragedy highlighted by the migrant vessel capsizing this weekend could be made worse by a surge in attacks against innocent targets across Europe.”