Germans say al-Qaeda no longer organizing strikes

18th May 2006, Comments 0 comments

18 May 2006, DUESSELDORF - Al-Qaeda's hierarchy in western Europe has vanished and the terrorist network's leadership has largely ceased direct management of attacks, a senior German police intelligence officer told a trial court this week.

18 May 2006

DUESSELDORF - Al-Qaeda's hierarchy in western Europe has vanished and the terrorist network's leadership has largely ceased direct management of attacks, a senior German police intelligence officer told a trial court this week.

She said the al-Qaeda leadership now mainly relied on video and internet proclamations to inspire Islamists in the western world to act on their own.

Germany's BKA federal crime agency had no evidence of Islamists swearing an oath of loyalty to Osama bin Laden since 2001 to become al-Qaeda members. The only terrorist to have done so since that date was Abu-Musab al-Sarqawi, the Jordanian who mounts attacks in Iraq.

She said a hierarchically organized al-Qaeda network in western Europe no longer existed.

The police officer, who investigates Islamist threats, was testifying at the trial in Dusseldorf of three Arab men accused of terrorism on behalf of al-Qaeda and an insurance scam aimed at raising funds for suicide attacks in Iraq.

Prosecutors say they also tried to obtain nuclear material for a "dirty bomb". The three were arrested before they could act.

DPA

Subject: German News

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