Storbritannias første parlamentsmedlem av muslimsk herkomst, Khaldi Mahmood, fra Labour, sier myndighetene undervurderer antall briter som kjemper for IS.

Myndighetenes tall på 500 har stått stille i over et halvt år. Mahmood sier at det virkelige tallet snarere ligger rundt 2000. Han er hjemmehørende i Birmingham, og der sier han jihad er stor blant de unge.

As many as 2,000 Britons are fighting alongside Islamist militants in Syria and Iraq, a senior Muslim MP has claimed.

Officials had suggested that the number of British jihadists within the ranks of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) and other terrorist groups was about 500.

However, Khalid Mahmood, the Labour MP for Birmingham Perry Barr, a constituency with a significant number of Muslims, has suggested this was a fourfold underestimate of the number of British jihadists fighting in the region.

“The authorities say there are 500 British jihadists but the likely figure is at least three to four times that,” he said. “I think 2,000 is a better estimate. My experience in Birmingham is it is a huge, huge problem.”

There are growing fears that the authorities remain unable to detect extremists leaving UK ports on their way to terrorist training camps.

Mahmood kritiserer myndighetene for passivitet. Kontrollen ved grensene er altfor dårlig. Jihadistene kan nærmest komme og gå som de vil.

But Mr Mahmood said the Home Office had so far failed to do enough to crack down on British jihadists coming and going through UK ports.

Mr Mahmood, England’s first Muslim MP and a former member of the Commons home affairs committee, said: “The Government does not have significant people at border control. The fact is these jihadists are coming in and going out without almost ever being arrested. We have had hardly any arrests. We have had people coming back in after six months in Syria and they are not being picked up.”