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Top French terror judge warnsIraq becoming ‘land of jihad’

LONDON, April 2 (AFP) – Iraq is liable to become a “land of jihad”, or holy war, if peace and stability cannot be restored, France’s powerful anti-terrorist judge Jean-Louis Bruguiere said Friday.

Speaking on BBC radio, Bruguiere reiterated the concern, which he expressed a year ago, that the US and British invasion of Iraq would fan the flames of global terrorism in the name of Islam.

“My concern right now is that this country (Iraq) could become, in the

future, a new land of jihad, like Afghanistan was in the past,” the veteran investigating judge said.

“It is very important to focus our attention and to restore peace in that region,” he said. “If the situation becomes more and more restless, I fear that it will be a new focus of terror and a new ground for jihad.”

If that were to happen, Iraq would become “attractive soil” for global

terrorists looking for a place to make preparations, said Bruguiere, who spoke to the BBC three weeks after the March 11 train bombings in Madrid.

He also warned of an “operational connection between the situation in Iraq… and the level of threat in Europe”.

“This is an attractive situation for all the elements sharing the strategy of Al-Qaeda,” he said. “This could … continue to have an impact on the level of threat.”


                                                      Subject: French news