Anti terror powers drawn up amid concern at British Muslims joining ISIS including Mohammed Emwazi, the 26-year-old known as ‘Jihadi John’
Sweeping new anti-terror powers will be introduced this week – including powers to stop ‘jihadi brides’ boarding planes and a ban on extremists working with children.
The terror proposals are being drawn up by the Home Office amid growing concerns at the threat posed by home-grown fanatics.
A Government counter-terror strategy would also lead to closer scrutiny of Sharia courts operating in the UK, and job centres would be required to help identify people potentially at risk of being radicalised.
The raft of new measures were revealed in a leaked document published by the Sunday Telegraph, which calls on the government to be ‘more assertive’ in challenging extremism.
It has been drawn up in the wake of worrying revelations about British Muslims going overseas to join ISIS including Mohammed Emwazi, the 26-year-old known as ‘Jihadi John’.
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan admitted she was ‘concerned’ about what might be being taught in some schools.
She told Murnaghan on Sky News: ‘I’m not going to comment on what is a leaked document, but I think as Education Secretary it would be right for me to say I am of course concerned about what might be taught in some of our schools.
‘And we have since last year required all schools to actively promote these fundamental British values so that our education system is opening up young minds, it is not closing them down.
‘And I think the messages that young people receive, whether it’s in school or outside school, are very, very important.’
The new strategy has not been signed off by ministers, and some of the measures could be expected to raise objections among Liberal Democrats if they are deemed to infringe civil liberties.
It could lead to changes in the rules granting citizenship to encourage new arrivals to embrace ‘British values’. It also proposes a penalties scheme to encourage people on benefits to learn English.
Schoolgirls Amira Abase, Kadiza Sultana and Shamima Begum left the UK for Turkey to make their way to Syria to join ISIS
The document states that ‘in the past, there has been a risk that the Government sends an ambivalent and dangerous message – that it doesn’t really matter if you don’t believe in democracy’.
It adds: ‘We need to stand up and be more assertive in promoting our values and challenging the extremists who fundamentally oppose them.’
‘This will include explaining our foreign policy (and) promoting mainstream voices supporting the quiet majority in all communities who oppose extremism.’
The Home Office concluded that the so-called ‘Trojan Horse plot’ involving the infiltration of schools by extremists in the Midlands, was ‘not an isolated example of schools where extreme views became prevalent’.
And it warned that universities, local councils and charities are vulnerable to ‘entryism’ whereby extremists deliberately secure jobs in particular institutions in order to promote their values.
Home Secretary Theresa May wants to push through new anti-terror powers to stop British Muslims being radicalised
Three East London schoolgirls are still unaccounted for after leaving the UK heading for Syria. Shamima Begum and Amira Abase, both 15, and Kadiza Sultana, 16, are thought to have been groomed by extremists using social media sites.
Around 700 British Muslims are reported to have travelled to Syria to fight with Islamic State, and several hundred have returned to Britain.
Last month the Washington Post uncovered the identity of ‘Jihadi John’ – the terrorist seen in multiple propaganda beheading videos featuring brutal murders of Western hostages.
Last week the Mail revealed the staggering cost of benefits for Emwazi, a university graduate radicalised in London, and his family. It is thought that housing him and his relatives in affluent parts of London has cost taxpayers up to £400,000.