Terror expert warns fighters returning from Syria ‘will be next generation of bin Ladens’

One of London’s leading counter-terrorism experts has warned that Western fighters who return home from the conflict in Syria will form a “next generation of Osama bin Ladens” .

Professor Peter Neumann, head of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation at King’s College, said some returning extremists could be reintegrated safely back into society.

But he warned others would be “outright dangerous” and “brutalised” individuals, who would become future Islamist leaders and put the public in the West at risk for decades.

At a counter-terrorism conference convened by Barack Obama in the US, he said: “Just like Osama bin Laden started his career in international terrorism as a foreign fighter in Afghanistan in the Eighties, the next generation of Osama bin Ladens are currently starting theirs in Syria and Iraq.”