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ARRESTED TERRORIST LINKED TO HOTEL BOMBINGS ACTIVE ON FACEBOOK AND OTHER INTERNET SOCIAL NETWORKS

August 27, 2009

ARRESTED TERRORIST LINKED TO HOTEL BOMBINGS ACTIVE ON FACEBOOK AND OTHER INTERNET SOCIAL NETWORKS

“There can be no successful counter-terrorism effort without closely monitoring Internet technologies,” Center says.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a leading Jewish human rights NGO that tracks the use of Internet technologies by hate and terrorist groups, says that Mohammad Jabril, an Indonesian militant who was arrested yesterday on charges related to last month’s hotel bombings in Jakarta, built up an extensive online presence. Wiesenthal Center researchers have uncovered examples of Jabril’s websites, including, arrahman.com, which has been cited by the Center in its annual CD-ROM report, Digital Terrorism and Hate 2.0 as a sophisticated example of the extraordinary growth of pro-terrorist activity online.   Much of Jabril’s activity is associated by Ar-rahman Media, the publishing company founded by Jabril’s father, Abu Jabril, the alleged leader of the extremist group, Jemaah Islamiah. 

Arrahman.com serves as a one-stop resource for South East Asian extremists with insurgent videos, pronouncements by Al Qaeda leaders, discussion forums, an online store for books and DVDs and even games. One game, “Long Range Shooting Simulation” teaches sharpshooting skills. Mohammad Jabril also makes use of Facebook to gather together followers. The Center has found his Facebook profile and links to other group pages, including Cyberjihad, which posts religious justifications for suicide terror.

“Jabril has successfully leveraged the dynamic Internet technology to promote the forces of extremism and terrorism,” said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center and a leading expert in combating digital hate. “This is part of a deeply disturbing trend worldwide and demands the close scrutiny of authorities and human rights activists—there can be no successful counter-terrorism effort without closely monitoring Internet technologies,” Cooper concluded.

For the past 11 years, Wiesenthal Center researchers have followed the steady growth of Internet terror and hate and reported their findings in its annual CD-ROM report, Digital Terrorism and Hate. The latest findings come from the analysis of over 10,000 problematic sites. The Center has also examined social networking as a critical tool for terrorist and hate groups—as evidenced by Mohammad Jabril’s Facebook pages. Center officials have been working closely with Facebook to detect these kinds of entries on their popular site.

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The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).

For more information, please contact the Center's Public Relations Department, 310-553-9036, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter,  or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter page or mobile device.