Washington, Dec 16 : A new report has shed light on the growing threat of terrorist attacks carried out by individuals.
The double terrorist attack in Norway last July, which claimed 77 lives, has moved violent acts committed by single individuals up the political, media and now research agendas.
Known as "lone wolf terrorism," these acts are carried out independently of established terrorist organizations.
Dr. Ramon Spaaij, from La Trobe University in Australia and the University of Amsterdam, examines this so-far largely unexplored phenomenon in his new report `Understanding Lone Wolf Terrorism'.
"While lone wolf terrorism incidents still account for only a very small percentage of the total number of terrorist attacks, the number of lone wolf incidents has been on the rise in recent decades," Spaaij said.
Indeed, the report shows that international security agencies now consider acts of terrorism carried out by individuals as one of the most likely forms of terrorist attack.
Spaaij's report examines and maps the extent and nature of lone wolf terrorism, by drawing on a combination of international data from terrorism databases and high-profile case studies, including Anders Behring Breivik's acts in Norway last summer. Such acts tend to be carefully planned and prepared.
For the first time, an in-depth analysis is provided of the key features of lone wolf terrorism worldwide over the last four decades.
The report provides insights for those working to prevent or minimize the effects of terrorism and political violence, by exploring what drives the lone wolf terrorist to commit mass violence and discussing how this phenomenon can be countered effectively. (ANI)