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Former Kerala journalist in Syria joins IS, say intel agencies

A journalist from Kerala has allegedly joined the Islamic State (IS) along with his friends. The journalist, who was working with a daily in Palakkad, Kerala, had sought a transfer to west Asia in 2014 before heading for war-torn Syria, intelligence agencies confirmed.

india Updated: Aug 08, 2015 09:59 IST
HT Correspondent
Iraqi-security-forces-and-Shiite-fighters-from-the-Popular-Mobilisation-units-gather-next-to-a-mural-depicting-the-emblem-of-the-Islamic-State-IS-group-outside-one-of-the-presidential-palaces-in-Tikrit-AFP-Photo
Iraqi-security-forces-and-Shiite-fighters-from-the-Popular-Mobilisation-units-gather-next-to-a-mural-depicting-the-emblem-of-the-Islamic-State-IS-group-outside-one-of-the-presidential-palaces-in-Tikrit-AFP-Photo

A journalist from Kerala has allegedly joined the Islamic State (IS) along with his friends. The journalist, who was working with a daily in Palakkad, Kerala, had sought a transfer to west Asia in 2014 before heading for war-torn Syria, intelligence agencies confirmed.

The journalist’s presence in Syria was confirmed after the London Police rounded up some sympathisers of the Islamic State. He reportedly came in contact with IS through social media and his relatives initially tried their best to dissuade him. When the pressure mounted he sought a transfer to Qatar in 2014 and later travelled to Syria to join the IS.

“Intelligence agencies were tracking his social media account for some time. Before they could pin him down, he slipped out of Qatar. Though we are keeping a close tab on his friends and relatives here, there are chances he may brain wash some of the Indian youth working in the middle east,” said a senior police officer.

His relatives told the police that he is a sociology graduate, fluent in English and learned Arabic while he was in Qatar. “A soft-spoken guy he took keen interest in Muslim politics world over. Also a net addict, he was really good in learning new apps,” said a former journalist colleague who did not wish to be named.

Kerala is fast turning a breeding ground for fundamentalist forces. According to reports, 13 persons from the country have joined the IS so far.

Read:

Mumbai resident who wanted to join IS detained by Delhi Police

Islamic State kidnaps 230 civilians in Syria: Monitor group