Saturday 20 January 2018

Isil plan to attack NY subway and Paris Metro uncovered

US President Barack Obama speaks at the United Nations meeting on the Ebola outbreak in New York. Reuters
US President Barack Obama speaks at the United Nations meeting on the Ebola outbreak in New York. Reuters

Amille Laurac

Iraq's Prime Minister has warned of a significant threat from Isil to attack the New York subway system and the Metro in Paris.

Last night New York City's police confirmed that they were aware of the warning that Isil was planning to target the mass-transit systems used by millions daily.

The threats were also being treated with the uttermost seriousness in Paris.

"We are in close contact with the FBI and other federal partners as we assess this particular threat stream," said John Miller, deputy commissioner for intelligence and counter-terrorism at the New York City Police Department.

"New York City normally operates at a heightened level of security and we adjust that posture daily based on our evaluation of information," he said and added that they had received the report from the Iraq prime minister that his country's intelligence operation uncovered a plot for an attack on subway systems in the United States and Paris.

In another development last night the US said that it believes it has identified the masked Islamic State militant who was filmed beheading two kidnapped American journalists and a British aid worker.

James Comey, the director of the FBI, reportedly said his agents believe they have identified the man, but would not be releasing his identity.

Mr Comey's announcement at a briefing with American reporters is the first time an official on either side of the Atlantic has said they believed the killer has been identified.

The killer, nicknamed "Jihad John", taunted British Prime Minister David Cameron and and US President Barack Obama in the videos and set off a global manhunt.

Meanwhile, yesterday, Isil publicly killed a civil rights lawyer in the Iraqi city of Mosul after finding her guilty of apostasy in a self-styled Islamic court, the UN said.

Samira Salih al-Nuaimi was seized from her home on September 17 after allegedly posting messages on Facebook that were critical of the militants' destruction of religious sites in Mosul. Her Facebook page appears to have been removed since her death.

According to the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq, al-Nuaimi was tried in a so-called "Sharia court" for apostasy, after which she was tortured for five days before the militants sentenced her to public execution.

"By torturing and executing a female human rights' lawyer and activist, defending in particular the civil and human rights of her fellow citizens in Mosul, Isil continues to attest to its infamous nature, combining hatred, nihilism and savagery, as well as its total disregard of human decency," said Nickolay Mladenov, the UN envoy to Iraq.

In Baghdad, Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said he was told of the plot by security chiefs, and that it was the work of foreign fighters of Isil in Iraq. When asked if the attacks were imminent, Mr al-Abadi replied: "I'm not sure."

When asked if the dangers had been thwarted, he said, "No." Mr Al-Abadi said that Washington had been notified.

Yesterday the US-led coalition against Isil targeted 12 oil refineries in Syria on a third night of air strikes against the militants. Raids carried out by US, Saudi and UAE aircraft killed 14 of the group's fighters and five civilians in eastern Syria, activists said. According to the Pentagon, the refineries generated up to €1.6m per day in revenue for the terrorists.

In northern Syria, Kurdish forces say they have pushed back an Isil advance. President Obama has vowed to dismantle their "network of death". (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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