Identify and Act

What are the signs that tell us that someone may be in the process of radicalization?

Relatives, family and friends are the first to notice behavioral changes that may be signals of interest in violent extremism. Radicalization is the process of adopting an extremist system which is unique and different for different individuals. There is no single path to radicalization, but there are a number of behaviors and signs that are commonly observed in people who are in the process of radicalization.

Possible signs of radicalization in an individual:

Changes in ideology, beliefs he / she has as well as in the way of thinking

The individual begins to display ideas which are increasingly radical. Shows little or no tolerance for different opinions and views. Begins to become part of a certain group and displays perspectives that are fundamentally divisive: “Them against us” and vice versa. Supports and states that acts which are extremist or terrorist are right.

Isolation and distancing from the previous social circle or from relatives

The individual begins to distance himself and maintain little contact with close persons. Often he can debate with family and friends about political or ideological views. In extremist groups where the individual can engage, recruiters are often asked to show the individual that he or she is loyal to the group to prove his or her full commitment. These are reflected in the constant changes and fluctuations of the mood as well as isolation and distancing from the people around.

Changes in behavior and appearance

The individual may begin to exhibit visible changes in behavior. He may display high aggression, violent outbursts, irritability, etc He justifies all the actions he commits with the believes of the extremist ideology he has adopted. Often times the individual makes changes in appearance using elements that identify him with a certain extremist group (clothing, tattoo with messages of extremist groups, etc.)

Spending too much time online and on social media

Using the internet to view, download and disseminate violent extremist material is often part of the process of radicalization. Some people may casually see such material out of curiosity, but people who are in the process of radicalization tend to save and share this material with others. They spend a lot of time navigating online sites with extremist content, contacting other individuals with the same extreme views, and spreading radical and extremist messages.

It is important to be careful and seek professional help if we suspect that a person we know may be in the process of being radicalized by tending to help without prejudice.


Facts and Data

If you want to know what are the most dangerous attacks carried out in the world, in the link below you will find a chronology of them:

Do you know how many people have lost their lives to terrorist attacks in the world?

In recent decades the average number of deaths from terrorist attacks has been 20,000 ranging from 7,827 to 44,490 in 2014 (which was the year with the highest number of deaths from terrorist attacks).

In 2017, about 56 million people died. 26,000 of them have died as a result of terrorism.

In 2018, there were 15,952 deaths due to terrorism in 71 countries (which is the highest number of countries affected by terrorism since 2002)

The Danger of Right-wing Extremism

Many experts have identified right-wing extremism as a distinct form of political violence, often with blurred boundaries between hatred and organized terrorism. Although not a widespread phenomenon, right-wing extremism has recently seen an increase in frequency and risk from some individuals, groups and movements (operating online and offline) spreading racist messages to minorities, xenophobia, Islamophobia or anti-Semitism.

Although the data show that the number of terrorist incidents of right-wing extremism is relatively low, studies show that there has been an increase in the frequency and severity of these incidents in the last three years.

Click here to learn more.

A connection between mental health functioning and violent extremism can often be pointed out. While there are many misconceptions about this issue which can have a very negative impact on the stigmatization of people suffering from mental health problems. It should be noted that there are no clear causes when it comes to mental health and violent extremism and we are not limited to defined mental health diagnoses, but also to conditions that present potential vulnerabilities despite the fact that we are not dealing with disturbing diagnoses. People suffering from mental health problems may tend to be more attracted to the fear of being prejudiced and consequently more easily accessible by radical and extremist groups. Therefore, it is very necessary to work with people who have mental health problems to strengthen protective and resilient factors in order to compensate for the risk factors.

List of terrorist organizations

Foreign Terrorist Organizations that continue to be active

Delisted Foreign Terrorist Organizations