Al-Qaeda attack thwarted in Germany

Jim Kouri by Jim Kouri on May 3rd, 2011

This is article 163 of 804 in the topic Terrorism

Not everyone in Pakistan was happy bin Laden was killed. Thousands of radical Islamists in Pakistant mourned the demise of the terrorist leader. Photo: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

The day before U.S. special forces killed al-Qaeda’s infamous leader Osama bin Laden, German officials charged one of bin Laden’s jihadists with being a member of a foreign terrorist group.

The suspected terrorist, arrested by German police officers on Friday and arraigned on Saturday, had received direct orders from al-Qaeda, according to prosecutors preparing a court case against three men being held on suspicion of plotting a bomb attack in Germany.

The group’s 29-year-old suspected ring-leader, Moroccan national Abdeladim K, was charged in a federal court in Karlsruhe on Saturday with membership of a foreign terrorist organization.  However, it was not yet disclosed what charges the other two suspects, Jamil S, a 31-year-old German-Moroccan, and Amid C, a 19-year-old German-Iranian, would face or if the two accomplices were cooperating with police investigating the terrorist plot.

According to a report from the German national police, a senior al-Qaeda member believed to be located on the Afghan-Pakistan border gave the order but had not yet picked out a target or targets. The three suspects were arrested in the cities of Duesseldorf and Bochum after allegedly buying bomb-making materials, a US intelligence source informed the Law Enforcement Examiner.

According to the German publication Der Spiegel, Islamists in Germany have been associated with several attacks:

In March, an ethnic Kosovo Albanian shot dead two US airmen on a bus at Frankfurt airport, injuring two others before his gun jammed; he told police he had wanted to avenge Afghans killed by Americans, but he was not thought to be part of a militant group
In 2006, home-made bombs were placed on trains in Cologne but failed to explode; a Lebanese man was jailed for life for the attack.
The 9/11 ring-leader, Mohammed Atta, worshiped in a mosque in the northern city of Hamburg.

Der Spiegel magazine reported that the German secret service stated its agents were assisted by the United States’ CIA and as well as Moroccan intelligence agents in a three-month investigation. Also, telephone calls and Internet communications and emails were intercepted by German intelligence from one of the three suspects.

The three terror suspects were arrested immediately after police investigators heard they were planning a test after buying chemicals which could be used to create an improvise explosive device (IED).

German officials stated that the three suspects had openly praised a deadly bomb attack on a cafe in Marrakesh, Morocco, which killed 15 people on Thursday.

“Al-Qaeda is itching to successfully attack a target in a Western country in Europe or in North America. They are not going to give up and they are not going to change their minds. Western leaders better let that sink in,” said a former intelligence officer who now runs an international security consulting firm.

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