olice officers on Christmas Eve arrested 12 suspected terrorists for plotting a terrorist attack in the Netherlands, according to Dutch law enforcement officials.
The twelve suspects, between the ages of 19 and 50, were arrested late on Friday after a message was received from the Dutch intelligence and security service, the prosecutors said in a statement.
The message informed Dutch authorities that a number of Somali nationals were plotting to perpetrate a terrorist attack in the Netherlands in the near future, according to prosecutors.
A retail shop and four houses in Rotterdam were searched by counterterrorism teams including forensic specialists, as well as two motel rooms in the village of Gilze-Rijen.
During the searches, police commanders stated they found no weapons, explosives or incendiary devices. Six suspects resided in Rotterdam, while five of the suspected terrorists did not appear to have a home address. One of the men arrested is believed to be a resident of Denmark, police reported.
Counterterrorism experts in the Netherlands believe the suspects are linked to the Somali terrorist organization Al Shabaab, a group affiliated with al-Qaeda.
The Dutch arrests follow an Islamic terrorist case in which British police detectives last Monday (December 20) captured 12 suspected terrorists as a result of INTERPOL warnings regarding possible Christmas bomb attacks in the United States, the United Kingdom, and other European nations.
The suspects, Muslim males aged between 17 and 28, were detained in London, Birmingham, Cardiff, and Trent and charged with suspicion of commission, preparation or instigation of an act of terrorism in the U.K., security officials said.
Police and MI5 searches began after the arrests at several locations, with detectives and forensic technicians seeking evidence of terrorism such as materials that could be used to make improvised explosive devices.
Interpol had issued an all-points-bulletin last week that told its more than 180 member nations that it "received information... from the Interpol office in Baghdad about possible threats, especially in the U.S. and Europe, due to orders given to al-Qaeda cells by al-Qaeda commanders."
According to a report obtained by the Terrorism Committee of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, Interpol knew about the recent suicide bombing in Stockholm prior to the blast.
During that attack, a suspected al Qaeda attacker detonated a car bomb then killed himself in a separate explosion. Fortunately, there were no deaths and only two people sustained injuries.
Swedish police identified that attacker as Iraqi-born Taimour Abdulwahab al Abdaly, who allegedly was trained by an al-Qaeda cell in the Britain. Warnings about further possible attacks also came from Iraqi government officials.
A member of the NYPD's detective bureau told this writer that a possible terrorist target would be a large public venue with large crowds of people in metropolitan areas. Among the holiday security measures is the wider use of bomb-sniffing dogs in transit systems, airports, shopping malls and other public places throughout the U.S.
somali Information Minister
daily news bulletin.
|Bulletin-ka Wakaalada SONNA Sabti 25 Dec 2010.pdf|
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