The Islamic State renamed Kobane on Google Maps

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Även på nätet har IS-anhängare lyckats göra ett obehagligt avtryck. Den som söker på Google Maps efter Kobane eller stadens arabiska namn Ayn al-Arab, möts även av namnet Ayn al-Islam, skrivet med arabisk text. Det är namnet som bara IS använder på Kobane. En direkt översättning blir Islams öga.

The Islamic State continues with their propaganda war on the internet.

On Google Maps the terrorist organisation has renamed the large Syrian city Kobani – to Ayn al-Islam.

The city of Kobane has suffered greatly during the last few years. It was under control of the Islamic State from September last year when most of the population fled to Turkey. At least 200 000 people had to run from executions, rape and looting.

In Januari the city was liberated but the terrorist organisation has found a new way to spread their propaganda.

Those who uses Google Maps will discover that another name has been added to Kobani. Searches on Google Maps shows the name Ayn al-Islam, in Arabic letters, instead of the traditional Arabic name for Kobani, Ayn al-Arab.

Google explains that the changes can be made by anyone, since the content is user generated.

– The place names on Google Maps are based on information from several different sources, including users information, says Joanna Mossberg, spokesperson for Google Sweden.

She recommends that users report any similar discoveries to the company.

Renaming cities could be a part of the Islamic States global propaganda war, according to experts.

– It is another way for them to spread their propagande and to build their state. As when they destroy antiquities and historical objects, changing names of cities is a way to erase history, says Peder Hyllengren, researcher on the Department of Security at the Swedish Defence Univeristy.