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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Spain 'al Qaeda cell' may have planned strike to coincide with Olympics

(CNN) -- Three suspected al Qaeda terrorists arrested last week in Spain appear to have been interested in targeting a Gibraltar-area shopping mall in a strike that was likely intended to coincide with the London Olympic Games, an analyst says.

Police deduced this from the declaration of a paragliding instructor who had dealings with the group and the contents of a video they recovered from the suspects, according to Fernando Reinares, a senior international terrorism analyst who was briefed by Spanish security services on the investigation.

"Attacking in or near Gibraltar during the Olympic Games apparently was for them a feasible alternative to what they, and their corresponding organizational leadership, perceived as a much more difficult operation, that of attempting an act of terrorism in London," Reinares told CNN.

While the planned execution date of their alleged plot is still not clear, any attack on or near British soil during the Olympic Games would have generated intense global publicity. Read More