18 Teenage tour for terror
A SYDNEY teenager arrested on suspicion of terrorism in Lebanon was preparing to become a suicide bomber, according to security forces.
The dual national, 18, identified only as AM, has been detained in Lebanon pending a court appearance on allegations he was preparing to travel to Syria to join Islamic State.
Lebanon’s Internal Security Forces said the teen was born in Lebanon in 1999, but had lived in Sydney for “several years” and became radicalised in Australia after watching IS videos and propaganda online.
It said he had downloaded instructions on bomb-making and videos of IS assassinations, and was two days away from travelling to Syria when he was arrested on October 28 in Tripoli.
“About a week before his arrest, he contacted a cadre of the Daesh (IS) organisation in Syria and showed his willingness to carry out a suicide or explosive operation the IFS said.
“He was instructed to do so. He asked the cadre, if this was not possible, to help him move into the Syrian territory to fight in the ranks of Daesh. He was arrested before the answer to his request was received.”
The IFS said the teen had got an Australian passport and a permit to travel before arriving in Lebanon on in Lebanon,” August 20, where he had been placed under surveillance and monitoring.
They said travelling to Lebanon was an attempt to avoid drawing the attention of Australian authorities.
“The investigation revealed he had resided in Sydney for several years and embraced extremist ideology by following the publications and videos of the organisation,” the ISF said.
“After his arrival in Lebanon he continued (speaking) with members of Daesh in Syria via the internet.
“He was linked with a co-ordinator of the organisation in one of the neighbouring countries where he explained his plan of travel to Syria.”
ISF said the teen had given them information about Australian members, supporters and financiers of IS.
He admitted he had “embraced the idea of an advocacy organisation for about two years’’ and followed several websites, social networking sites and groups affiliated with IS.