UPDATE 2-Britain's Cameron announces anti-militant plan, tells internet firms to help

Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:49am EDT
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By William James

LONDON, July 20 (Reuters) - Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday that moderate Muslims in Britain should speak out against Islamist militants, saying it was wrong to deny any connection between their religion and acts of violence.

Cameron outlined a counter-extremism strategy designed to halt the spread in Britain of the radical ideology promoted by Islamic State militants (IS or ISIL) in Syria and Iraq - what he called the "struggle of our generation".

He also demanded that internet companies do more to help fight the spread of radical ideologies.

An aim of the strategy will be to target "home-grown" militants. Around 700 Britons are estimated to have travelled to Syria and Iraq to join IS militants, some of whom have since returned.

Cameron said to meet that goal, the religious drivers behind extremism had to be acknowledged and that moderate Muslim voices needed to be heard.

"Simply denying any connection between the religion of Islam and the extremists doesn't work," he said. "It is an exercise in futility to deny that and more than that, it can be dangerous."

Announcing a range of initiatives, he singled out internet companies for criticism.   Continued...