The suspects arrested in Europe in 2014 during operations aimed at terrorists inspired by religion are, on average, younger than those arrested in 2013. The number of women arrested for the same reason also went up in 2014, Europol says in its report titled “EU Terrorism Situation and Trend Report 2015”. Around 90% of suspects arrested for terrorism inspired by religion are younger than 40. 172 of these suspects were younger than 25, which is double the figure for 2013. “We are also noticing a dramatic increase in the number of women being arrested for this type of terrorism”, says Europol. 52 female presumed terrorists were arrested in Europe in 2014, compared to only 6 in 2013.
Europol has not released specific figures showing the age and sex of the terrorism suspects arrested in Belgium. The federal Prosecutor’s office, which deals with terrorism in Belgium, was not able to give more precise information on Europol’s figures, but said they confirm trends police noticed last year.