07 June 2017

Brits Are Mulling Burkha Ban and Stripping Citizenship

London Attack
After yet another deadly terrorist attack swept through the streets of Britain last 3 June, lawmakers and leaders were scrambling to take back the reins and foil any further tragedies.

British Prime Minister Theresa May, speaking last 4 June after a meeting of the government’s COBRA emergency committee, claimed there was "too much tolerance" of Islamist extremism in the U.K. and insisted that the country’s counter-terrorism strategy would be reviewed. One of the popular measure being considered is a ban on Muslims.

While such reviews remain in preliminary stages, a British intelligence source told Fox News that it is an "all hands at the pump" approach, with Joint Intelligence Operations to be carried out collaboratively with M15, Scotland Yard and the Army’s Special Air Service (SAS) all involved.

The points of focus include: recruiting and deploying even more counterterrorism officers, and pushing through new laws to "round up" suspected terrorists and, if convicted, stripping them of their citizenship as a deterrent.

"There is also early talk that things could go as far as banning the burka," the source said.

The burka debate has, for more than a decade, divided much of the British community. In 2006, MP and government minister Jack Straw first advocated support for such a prohibition in the media, but several years later apologized following the backlash. Nearby European countries such as France, Austria, Germany and Belgium have, over the years, implemented different degrees of legislation to restrict the wearing of full-face veils.

"It is just whispers at the moment, but if that goes live, one would guess that it will be enforced across the U.K.," the source noted.

Furthermore, the U.K. government is said to be planning how to dismantle the pockets of extremism and enforce mechanism that could improve the better ban on Muslim integration.

"There are a lot of Muslim strongholds in the U.K. from London and Luton to Birmingham, Burnley and Blackburn," added the intel source. "Right now, through weak policies, we have allowed the fundamentalists to spoil it for the majority."

British authorities also are said to be looking at ways to "force large Internet companies to ban extremist material on their search engines and additionally report any content that they find."

In her address, May vowed that the Internet could no longer function as a "safe space" for jihadism. Another intelligence source confirmed that May's focus is very much on the role of the Internet – restricting and monitoring – in the quest to infiltrate where cells congregate and how they communicate.