Five held for plot­ting at­tack on Dan­ish paper

The Pak Banker - - 6i Nternational -

COPEN­HAGEN: Dan­ish po­lice ar­rested five peo­ple sus­pected of plan­ning a Mum­baistyle at­tack to kill as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble in a build­ing hous­ing a Dan­ish news­pa­per that out­raged Mus­lims in 2005 with car­toons of Prophet Mo­ham­mad.

"It is our as­sess­ment that this is a mil­i­tant Is­lamist group and they have links to in­ter­na­tional ter­ror­ist net­works," Jakob Scharf, head of Den­mark's PET se­cu­rity po­lice, told a news con­fer­ence on Wed­nes­day.

Po­lice found a ma­chine gun with a si­lencer, am­mu­ni­tion and plas­tic strips that could be used as hand­cuffs in the at­tack that Scharf said was planned for Jan­uary 1. The sus­pects had planned to en­ter a Copen­hagen of­fice block hous­ing sev­eral news­pa­pers in­clud­ing of­fices of the daily Jyl­lands-Posten to "kill as many as pos­si­ble of those around."

"It is our as­sess­ment, based on our in­ves­ti­ga­tion, that the plans were to try to get ac­cess to the lo­ca­tion where the Dan­ish news­pa­per Jyl­land­sPosten is sit­u­ated in Copen­hagen and try to carry out a Mum­bai-style at­tack on that lo­ca­tion," Scharf said.

Many for­eign­ers, some of In­dia's wealthy busi­ness elite as well as poor com­muters, were among the 166 peo­ple killed by 10 Pak­istani gun­men in a three­day co­or­di­nated at­tack through some of Mum­bai's land­marks, in­clud­ing two ho­tels and a Jewish cen­ter. Scharf said au­thor­i­ties could not rule out the pos­si­bil­ity that the plot­ters may be linked to David Headley, a Chicago man who was ar­rested in Oc­to­ber 2009 and pleaded guilty in March this year to scout­ing tar­gets for the Mum­bai at­tack.

Four of the five sus­pects were de­tained at flats in two Copen­hagen sub­urbs, and one in Stock­holm. In Washington, White House spokesman Nick Shapiro said: "We com­mend the work done by the Dan­ish and Swedish au­thor­i­ties to dis­rupt this plot, and will con­tinue to co­or­di­nate closely with them and our other Euro­pean part­ners on all coun­tert­er­ror­ism mat­ters of com­mon con­cern."

Jyl­lands-Posten was the news­pa­per that first pub­lished the Mo­ham­mad car­toons, pro­vok­ing protests against Dan­ish and Euro­pean in­ter­ests in the Mid­dle East, Africa and Asia in which at least 50 peo­ple died.

Dan­ish Jus­tice Min­is­ter Lars Bar­foed said those de­tained had a "mil­i­tant Is­lamic back­ground" and called the plan the most se­ri­ous such at­tempt in Den­mark so far.

Dan­ish po­lice de­tained a 44-year-old Tu­nisian na­tional, a 29-year-old Swedish cit­i­zen born in Le­banon, a 30-year-old Swedish na­tional, whose coun­try of ori­gin was un­known and a 26-year-old Iraqi asy­lum ap­pli­cant, the PET said.

Si­mul­ta­ne­ously, Swedish au­thor­i­ties in Stock­holm de­tained a 37-year-old Swedish cit­i­zen of Tu­nisian ori­gin. - Reuters

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