Far-right extremism fastest growing terror threat, warns Neil Basu

Neil Basu  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Neil Basu (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

The UK’s senior-most counter-terrorism officer has warned that far-right extremism poses the fastest growing terror threat to Britain, as even young children are being groomed by right-wing extremists.

Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, Scotland Yard’s Indian-origin chief of counter-terror policing, said around 10 per cent of 800 live investigations now involve far-right extremists –- a “significant increase” from previous years.

“It’s my fastest growing problem,” he said at a briefing in London on Thursday (19).

“The extreme right wing is starting from a very low base but a 17 per cent rise in hate crime should make us all pause for thought. I see it as my job, and the security service as my major partner, to stop that,” he said.

Basu admitted that while Islamist extremism remained “by far globally the biggest threat people face”, the extreme right-wing threat has begun mimicking similar attack methods “designed to kill people”.

“The lone actor threat is the biggest problem. My biggest concern that is we have seen cases when people both in Islamist and right-wing space where people are radicalised in days or weeks, so how do we intervene earlier,” Basu said.

“We are bringing the full might of the UK counter-terrorism machine to bear against any extremist,” he added.