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Pak using social media for terrorist recruitment in Kashmir, US playing double role on Islamabad: Noted US expert

ANI | Updated: Dec 11, 2019 18:09 IST

Mohali (Punjab) [India], Dec 11 (ANI): Noted US terror expert Peter Chalk on Wednesday said that Pakistan could be using encrypted social media sites for direct terrorist recruitment in Kashmir and accused his own country of playing "double role" with Islamabad due to its interests in Afghanistan.
Speaking at 2nd KPS Gill Memorial Lecture here, Chalk also called Khalistani terrorists' Referendum 2020 as a part of the Inter-Services Intelligence's (ISI) bid to link Punjab with Kashmir issue.
"ISI may well leverage encrypted social media sites, secure telecommunication platforms and online mapping technology to covertly facilitate jihadist recruitment drives or directly support terrorist strikes in Kashmir, where it has a long history of backing anti-Indian outfits," a press note quoted Chalk as saying.
He suggested that the "best offensive mechanism" to deal with Pakistan was to work with friendly nations to put pressure on Islamabad, and also to convince these nations that they could also not escape the wrath of terror outfits operating from Pakistani soil.
"The US is playing a double role with Pakistan because of its strategic interest in Afghanistan - the reason why it wasn't taking a tougher stand against Islamabad," suggested the US expert from RAND Corporation.
In an apparent reference to the Referendum 2020, Chalk observed that an intensive social media effort aimed at radicalizing young Sikhs was currently being waged by pro-Khalistani militants based in Pakistan and Diaspora groups operating out of the US, UK and Canada.
"There are growing indications that the ISI is orchestrating much of this activity as part of a wider campaign to co-join instability in Punjab with unrest in Kashmir," he further warned, while speaking on "Digitized Hate: Online Radicalism, Violent Extremism and Terrorism".
In his keynote address, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh pointed out that in the globalised world, terror could easily straddle international geographical boundaries, with the use of the Internet and social media further contributing to promoting terror and terror ideology for luring youth, spreading hatred and propaganda.
Pointing to the sensitive location of Punjab as a border state with a hostile neighbour, and the growing challenge of narco-terrorism with linkages in Jammu & Kashmir, Captain Amarinder, who was presiding over the programme, stressed on the need for modern-day policing to thus remain technologically updated and professional in its approach.
"We cannot ever allow the state to relive those horrible days it went through....we all know what is happening again now," said the Chief Minister.
Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh lauded the leadership of KPS Gill in the Punjab Police and his contribution to bringing peace and normalcy to the state, calling upon the police force to let the late former DGP become a beacon of light to inspire them to become good leaders.
In another shocking disclosure, Chalk said the Islamic States has also leveraged the Internet and social media platforms to inspire, direct and authorise autonomous-cell and lone-wolf attacks in the United States and the West.
"Working from its enclaves in Afghanistan, IS has been doing this for some time with regards to attacking the US and there is no reason why similar action could not be undertaken that targets prominent cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Ludhiana," he added. (ANI)