The United Nations has imposed sanctions against a group of four British jihadists who traveled to fight for Islamic State in Syria and have been using the Internet to recruit others to join them.
The two men and two women are banned from traveling and have had their assets frozen, the UN Security Council said in a posting on its website Monday. It is the first time British fighters in Syria have been subject to sanctions.
“We will do all we can to stop British citizens from going to fight for ISIL and foreign fighters should face consequences for their actions,” Helen Bower, Prime Minister David Cameron’s spokeswoman, said in a statement. “It sends a clear deterrent message to those thinking of going to fight.”
Cameron will meet with U.S. President Barack Obama and other leaders of the counter-Islamic State coalition in New York on Tuesday as the international community seeks to end the four-year-old conflict in Syria. The U.K. will also pledge 10 million pounds ($15 million) for a London-based unit to counter Islamic State’s online propaganda.
The list includes London-born Sally-Anne Jones, 46, whose husband Junaid Hussain was killed in a drone strike in Syria last month. The other woman on the list, Aqsa Mahmood, 21, was born in Glasgow, Scotland and traveled to Syria to join Islamic State in 2013. Nasser Muthana, 21, from Cardiff, Wales, and Omar Hussain, 28, from High Wycombe, England, are also covered by the sanctions.
Earlier on Monday, Cameron discussed ways of disrupting Islamic State’s finances in a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. The two leaders agreed on the need to identify who’s buying the oil that pays for the group’s activities.
Britain proposed the names of the extremists now subject to sanctions this month and they were approved by the security council’s Al-Qaida and Associated Individuals and Entities Sanctions Committee.
They have all actively sought to recruit extremists and used the Internet to promote terrorism, including posting bomb-making details online, Cameron’s office said.