ISIS ‘planning large scale attacks against Europe’
ISIS terrorists could be planning ‘large scale’ attacks in Europe, international authorities have warned.
Europol , the European Union’s law enforcement agency, claims the continent is facing the most significant terrorist threat in over 10 years.
A growing number of foreign fighters and the recent tragedies in Paris have indicated a shift towards more ‘special forces style attacks’ happening in the international environment, it said in a statement today.
Europol claims that because of this there is a great need within the EU to “strengthen our response to terror , to suspected terrorist networks and foreign fighters, and have an improved strategic understanding of threats.”
After the Paris attacks the authority assigned up to 60 officers to support the French and Belgian investigations in Taskforce Fraternité.
So far 2.7 terabytes of information has been collected from these two countries, resulting in 800 intelligence leads and more than 1,600 leads on suspicious financial transactions.
Dimitris Avramopoulos, European commissioner for migration, home affairs and citizenship, said: “EU institutions responded swiftly and strongly to the terrorist attacks of last year and moved to augment the European Union’s capacity to deal with terrorist threat.”
The authority established the European Counter Terrorism Centre (ECTC), a major strategic opportunity for the EU to make collective efforts to fight terrorism more effective, this month.
It will be an enhanced central information hub by which the member states can increase information sharing and operational coordination.
The ECTC will be led by Mr Manuel Navarrete Paniagua, a high ranking officer of the Spanish Guardia Civil with extensive practical counter terrorism experience.