UAE arrests Indian nationals for alleged IS links

UAE arrests Indian nationals for alleged IS links
At least nine Indian nationals have been detained in the UAE, while two were deported after expressing sympathy for the group on social media.
2 min read
04 September, 2015
Indian Muslims constitute a significant proportion of the Emirates' migrant labour force [Getty]

At least nine Indian nationals have been in detention in the United Arab Emirates since early August, accused of planning to join the Islamic State group and recruit others, Indian media reported on Friday.

The Times of India reported as many as 11 Indians may have been detained on the charge.

The news comes a day after The Indian Express reported that two Indian men detained with the others had been deported after questioning, for expressing support for IS on social media.

According to the reports, the men were planning to travel separately to Syria, and were in the process of organising the logistics of their journeys.

Seventeen Indians are known to have already joined IS. All were reportedly well-educated and came from affluent, middle-class families. None had previous links to terrorist groups. Only one, reportedly a woman, has returned home.

Indian police have stopped at least 22 others travelling to join the group.

More than 1,000 Indian Muslim scholars jointly condemned the IS group this week in an attempt to prevent further radicalisation among India's 170 million Muslims.

Guest workers make up the bulk of the UAE's workforce, though exact numbers are unclear, and many of them are Muslim Indians and Pakistanis.

Many guest workers have lived in the UAE for a long time.

The two Indians who were deported to India reportedly received their education in the emirates.