Key Judgments (U/FOUO)
• (U/FOUO) While the majority of suicide bombers have been men, there have been in excess of 262 women suicide bombers since 1985.
• (U/FOUO) Open source reporting states that “al-Qa’ida terror cells have trained a group of female suicide bombers to attack Western targets including airliners. These women may have a non Arab appearance and may be traveling on Western passports.”
• (U) More stringent security measures and procedures in airports have led terrorists to seek alternative methods to circumvent explosive detection measures, which could possibly include the use of female attackers.
• (U/FOUO) Al-Qa’ida, reportedly, is considering using breast implants as a means to conceal explosives, which would be detonated by a liquid filled syringe that would replicate diabetics injecting insulin. Diabetic supplies (insulin and syringes) are not prohibited items on airliners.
(U/FOUO) The following commonalities have been identified among female suicide bombers:
• The majority of female suicide bombers are young, primarily between the ages of 17 and 24, however; the overall range in age for female suicide bombers is from 15 to 64.
• Female suicide bombers come from various educational, religious, social and personal backgrounds.
• Education plays a role, with the “more educated” females such as lawyers, paramedics, or students accounting for the greatest percentage of suicide attacks.
• Most tend to be of average economic status and are rarely impoverished.
• Some may be dishonored through sexual indiscretion, or unable to produce children. [emphasis added]
• Some appear motivated by revenge or grief of losing husbands or children as in the woman who killed 15 people in Diyala province on December 7, 2008. Her two sons joined al-Qa’ida in Iraq and were killed by security forces.
Recognizable Behavior (U/FOUO)
(U/FOUO) Male and female suicide bombers may portray many of the same indicative behaviors to include:
• The appearance of being nervous. May seem preoccupied or have a blank stare.
• Focused, intent, and vigilant. Such an acute focus may result in lack of response to verbal questions or commands.
• An awkward attempt to blend in. Behavior may seem odd or overtly out of place.
• Avoidance behaviors toward authority. If security is present, the suicide bomber tries to be inconspicuous.
• May be praying fervently to him/her self.
• Behavior may be consistent with that of a person without any future such as presenting a one-way ticket, or being unconcerned about receiving change for a purchase.
• Profuse sweating that is out of synch with weather conditions.
By Steve Doughty
PUBLISHED: 07:03 EST, 30 March 2012 | UPDATED: 16:43 EST, 30 March 2012
Up to 400 children in the past year have been coerced into or threatened with marriage – including a girl aged just five.
She is the youngest victim in Britain, according to the Home Office’s Forced Marriage Unit.
The young age of victims was disclosed as ministers consider whether to bring in new laws to make it possible to prosecute families who compel children to marry.
A new criminal offence of forced marriage could be similar to the system in force in Scotland, which carries a maximum penalty of two years in jail.
Children make up nearly a third of cases dealt with by the Home Office organisation. Its head, Amy Cumming, said: ‘The youngest of these was actually five years old, so there are children involved in the practice across the school age range.’
Miss Cumming said 29 per cent of the cases her unit dealt with last year were under the age of 18.
The name of the five-year-old has not been disclosed and no details of where or how she was married have been released.
The Home Office said that most cases involve families from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Iraq, Iran, Turkey and North and East Africa.
The latest figures show the number of cases has dropped slightly in the past year.
There were over 1,500 cases in 2011, she said. This compares with 1,618 in 2008, 1,682 in 2009 and 1,735 in 2010.
However official research has suggested that they are likely to be between 5,000 and 8,000 cases in England each year.
Cases frequently involve a girl or young woman being taken abroad, usually on the pretext of a holiday, then forced to marry a man they have never met in accordance with an arrangement reached by the two families.
The involvement of children in forced marriage was confirmed by independent groups.
Fionnuala Murphy of the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation said: ‘We have had clients who are in their very early teens, 11-year-olds, 12-year-olds, the youngest case we had was nine years old.’
Ministers say that forced marriage often breaks existing laws, including kidnapping, false imprisonment, harassment, or assault.
By Sarah Ferguson and Deb Masters – Updated April 3, 2012 11:25:00
What happens when young, educated, Australian-born girls are forced into unwanted marriages – often with relatives overseas?
Samia was just seventeen when her father announced he was taking her on a holiday overseas. But this was a holiday with a difference. Back in the family’s village in rural Pakistan, Samia watched in horror as the local Imam walked in ready to conduct her marriage to her first cousin – without her consent. With pressure from her extended family, she was given papers to sign and threatened.
Returning to Australia, Samia sought help from local religious authorities in Sydney – but they ignored her and told her to accept the marriage.
For the first time young women, the victims of forced marriages, are speaking out – without disguise and despite the risks of backlash from their communities. Are these women entitled to the same protection as other Australian girls?
The Government thinks so; in fact they are so concerned they are introducing criminal legislation to ban forced marriage. However, outspoken members of Australian migrant communities say it is their responsibility to stop the practice and the men who enforce it.
It’s not only women who experience force or coercion to push them into marriage. It happens to men too, often with disastrous consequences. Reporter Sarah Ferguson tells the story of one young woman who agrees to marry a man chosen by her family. What she doesn’t know until after the marriage is that he married her under duress. The relationship then descends into a spiral of alcohol and violence.
“Without Consent”, reported by Sarah Ferguson and presented by Kerry O’Brien, goes to air on Monday 2nd April at 8.30 pm on ABC1. It is replayed on Tuesday 3rd April at 11.35pm. It can also be seen on ABC News 24, Saturday at 8.00pm, on iview or at abc.net.au/4corners.
Video and complete transcript here.
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