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The rapid development of social network theory provides a new perspective for the research on counter-terrorism, but current research mostly relates to terrorists and terrorist organizations. Firstly, the "six-element" analysis method for terrorist activities based on social network is proposed in this paper, namely, a variety of sub-networks are constructed according to the correlation among the six elements - people, organization, time, location, method and event. These sub-networks are assessed through using centrality analysis, cohesive subgroup analysis, spatial correlation analysis, invulnerability analysis and descriptive statistic analysis, the characteristics and laws of terrorist activities are revealed from several different perspectives. Then, the "six-element" analysis method is applied to conduct empirical research on "East Turkistan" terrorist activities since the founding of the People's Republic of China. Finally, core people and key organizations of the "East Turkistan" terrorist activity network are effectively identified, the invulnerability of the "East Turkistan" terrorist network is assessed, and the temporal and spatial distribution rules as well as the characteristics of the methods adopted in all previous terrorist activities are revealed. In a word, this research can provide a basis for decision making and an analysis method for the identification of core terrorists and key terrorist organizations, determination of the key alert period, location of counter-terrorism and the early warning of the major methods of terrorist activities.
Date of Conference: 18-21 Aug. 2012