Denial over anti-terror conflict
4 August 2005, BRUSSELS — The chiefs of the police and intelligence service supervisory commissions have denied there is a "difference of opinion" over how to prevent a terrorist attack.
4 August 2005
BRUSSELS — The chiefs of the police and intelligence service supervisory commissions have denied there is a "difference of opinion" over how to prevent a terrorist attack.
The chairpersons were reacting to a newspaper report in which the Committee I — which supervises the intelligence agency VS — was opposed to proposals to expand the police force's role in combating terrorism.
The Committee P said in its annual 2004 report that police should receive greater funding and be more involved in the fight against terrorism. It also urged for a specialist anti-terrorism unit to be set up within the federal police corps.
However, the Committee I wrote in a memorandum to the Belgian Parliament that the proposals were "counter-productive", newspaper 'De Tijd' reported on Wednesday.
The committee also thought the police committee's report overly emphasised the interests of "every individual service" and said it has "a different opinion" about how the battle against terrorism should be carried out.
"The various services have in general sufficient means. What is needed is co-ordination: the bringing together of the information that every service possesses," the intelligence committee said.
However, the respective leaders of the intelligence and police committees, Anne-Marie Lizin and Herman De Croo, have denied talk of a conflict saying that neither they nor the committees have a difference of opinion.
The pointed to the fact the police supervision committee's report was accepted by the Parliament and Senate committees responsible for security issues.
They also said the government's planned anti-terror measures were a step in the right direction, newspaper 'Het Laatste Nieuws' reported on Thursday.
The federal government plans to establish before the autumn months a co-ordination and threat analysis office, Coda. The central office will gather intelligence over terrorist and extremist threats in Belgium.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Belgian news