Javid revises security strategy


Home secretary Sajid Javid
Home secretary Sajid Javid

POLICY UPDATED TO COUNTER EVOLVING TERROR THREATS BRITAIN on Monday (4) unveiled a new counter-terrorism strategy under which it will boost intelligence cooperation be­tween the domestic MI5 service and police as well as the private sector. The plan, called Contest, seeks to ensure “that there are no safe spaces for terrorists, no safe spaces internationally, in the UK or online,” home secretary Sajid Javid said in a keynote speech. “The threats are evolving. We must evolve too,” he told an audience of counter-terror­ism experts. The Home Office warned last Sunday (3) that the threat posed by Islamist militants to Britain is expected to remain high for the next two years and could even rise. The government said it had foiled 25 Is­lamist militant plots since June 2013 – 12 of those since March 2017 – and was currently handling more than 500 live operations. “The threat from terrorism is one of the starkest we face and it is clear there has been a step change,” Javid said at the launch of the revised strategy. He revealed that the time between being radicalised and planning an attack was shorter than in the past, radicalisation was happening more frequently online, and every­day items were being used to carry out plots. The new strategy “incorporates the les­sons learnt from the attacks in 2017 and our responses to them”, he said. Under the new plan, security services will be alerted to suspicious purchases more swiftly. Officials want the alarm raised as quickly as possible if there evidence of unu­sual transactions, such as someone stockpil­ing large amounts of chemicals or acting suspiciously when hiring a vehicle. Javid said Muslims were not responsible “for the acts of a tiny minority who twist their faith” and there was a unique role for them to play in the…

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