Bel­gian po­lice blew 13 chances to un­mask Paris at­tack­ers

The Myanmar Times - - World -

BEL­GIAN po­lice missed 13 op­por­tu­ni­ties to un­mask the par­tic­i­pants of the deadly Paris Novem­ber at­tacks be­fore the events, ac­cord­ing to an in­ter­nal re­port leaked to a news­pa­per.

The po­lice re­port in the De Tijd daily shows that as early as Fe­bru­ary 2015, the force were in pos­ses­sion of phone records link­ing known ter­ror­ist sus­pects with Salah Ab­deslam, al­legedly the sole sur­viv­ing mem­ber of the ji­hadist team that at­tacked Paris in Novem­ber 2015.

The in­for­ma­tion how­ever was not han­dled, due to lack of in­ves­ti­ga­tors, De Tijd cites the re­port as say­ing.

Of the 13 missed chances for Bel­gian po­lice to catch some of the Paris at­tack­ers, six were due to staffing short­ages, the se­cret re­port said.

Also left ig­nored by po­lice un­til after the tragedy was a re­quest from Span­ish au­thor­i­ties for more in­for­ma­tion on Mr Salah’s older brother Brahim Ab­deslam after he jour­neyed to Spain in March 2015.

Eight months after that visit, Brahim would blow him­self up in a Paris cafe on the night of the mas­sacre.

The Ab­deslams, as well as sev­eral oth­ers in­volved in the at­tacks, are from the gritty dis­trict of Molen­beek in Brus­sels.

Salah Ab­deslam has also been linked to sev­eral ji­hadists di­rectly in­volved in the bomb at­tacks in Brus­sels on March 22 this year.

Both sets of at­tacks were claimed by the Is­lamic State group.

Ear­lier leaks of the re­port said that Molen­beek po­lice warned higher ups that the Ab­deslam brothers had been rad­i­calised with links to Paris at­tacks ring­leader Ab­del­hamid Abaaoud, who was al­ready known as an im­por­tant fig­ure from IS.

But the in­for­ma­tion was never fol­lowed up, the re­port said. –

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