It was the revisit of 26/11 attack; three teams of terrorist wielding AK-47, grenades and explosives staged coordinated attacks at six locations across Paris on November 13. These locations included a concert hall, the Stade de France, where a football match was going on between France and Germany, and two restaurants. At least 129 people were killed and more than 300 others were injured in the terror attacks, first in the history of France. Eleven months ago, though, France had witnessed terrorists’ strike on its soil when office of the country’s highly popular satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo was attacked, leaving behind 17 people killed on the spot, but it was never as bigger as the current one. ISIS owned responsibility for the attack.
Notably, the West-Asia based terror outfit had also owned responsibility for shooting down of Russian airlines plane over the Egyptian sky a few days back. More than 200 people, including crew members were killed in that incident. While these developments confirm ISIS’ brutality, French investigators have stumbled upon several links that suggest that preparation for multiple terror attacks on the French capital was going on for a year or so. This contention has been backed by the Turkish government. In December 2014, Turkey had informed France about Omar Ismail Mostefai, one of terrorists who blew himself up at Paris’ Bataclan concert hall. But the French government did not take the tip off seriously. As a result, no further critical information was gathered about Mostefai who has through his early youth been a petty criminal.
Nonetheless, the incident took place a few days before France is set to organise UN sponsored summit on climate change. While French government headed by Francois Hollande showing resilience has opened schools, colleges and offices three days after the brutal killings, there is no specific hint whether climate summit would be held or not. A haze of confusion hover over the fate of the summit, expected to be attended by more than 190 heads of governments and states.
The incident also impacted G-20 summit. The French President could not attend the summit held in Antalya in Turkey. Not only that, the whole summit instead of focusing on economic and trade related issue, turned into an anti-terror conclave. India-led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for supporting UN convention on terrorism. To root out ISIS, each country, including the US, Russia, France, Turkey and the UK was urged to find a common ground. It is commonly felt that due to division among these countries, ISIS has grown to have a global dimension.
A report released after a conference of the European Police officials held in September in the Hague, maintained that there are around 50,000 Europeans who have joined the ranks of ISIS. Meanwhile, by launching a brutal attack on Paris, the outfit has served a reminder to the world that no country is powerful enough to stop it from hitting at its interests. French authorities fear that in days to come France may have to face yet another wave of ISIS-led attack.
ISIS has also threatened to attack India and the US. To prevent it, the need of hour is, youth would have to be stopped first from getting radicalised. Discrimination, lack of employment and huge disparity between haves or have nots are pushing younger generations to radicalisation. To stem out threats from ISIS or its cohorts like al-Qaeda, this has to be sorted out.