Arrested IS Suspects Planned To Target Politicians

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New Delhi: Suspected Fourteen IS men arrested, have disclosed to NIA on Monday that they were asked to focus on “political targets, foreigners, vital installations and government machinery” instead of carrying out explosion in market areas or crowded places.

Counter-terror experts believe that this is a new trend among home-grown jihadi. Indian Mujahideen (IM) which was responsible for multiple blasts in the country from 2004 to 2014 targeted market places and religious shrines than political targets.

On Sunday, two of the 14 arrested suspects were brought to New Delhi and were produced before a local court that remanded the duo for 13 days NIA custody. The two arrested have been identified as Abu Ansa (24) and Nafees Khan, both resident of Hyderabad. According to NIA, 12 other will be produced before the court on Monday.

The new strategy of the radicalised men of Ansar-ul-Tawhid (AuT), floated by former IM militants, is to target a political person because targeting public does not yield desired results. “The arrested suspects who owe their allegiance to AuT/IS believed that to shake the government, politicians should be targeted,” a top NIA official associated with the investigation told ET, requesting anonymity.

“IM commanders considered that it was difficult to target a political person and would have also led to lot of backlash against their community,” the official said.

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