Brits Scramble to Find Al-Qaeda Easter Bomb Factory
Great Britain is scrambling to find an Al-Qaeda Easter bomb factory.
Al-Qaeda was days away from carrying out an “Easter spectacular” of co-ordinated suicide bomb attacks on shopping centers in Manchester.
If such a plot was carried out, it would almost certainly have been Britain’s worst terrorist attack surpassing the 7-7 attacks in 2005.
The Times Online reported:
A desperate search was under way last night for the terrorist bomb factory from which a suspected al-Qaeda cell planned to launch a devastating attack in Manchester.
Hours after Britain’s most senior counter-terrorism officer resigned in disgrace, police operations were concentrating on a rundown block of flats east of Liverpool city centre.
The block was cordoned off and large quantities of material were seized for examination. People were evacuated from the area around the flats, which had been rented out by a private landlord to foreign students.
A dozen men are being questioned after raids that had to be rushed forward after Assistant Commissioner Bob Quick, the country’s most senior anti-terrorism officer, inadvertently disclosed details of the police plans.
Mr Quick resigned as head of Special Operations at Scotland Yard yesterday morning, admitting that his bungle “could have compromised a major counter-terrorism operation”…
Ten of the 12 men arrested on Wednesday were Pakistani nationals who entered Britain on student visas.
All were from the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan, the heartland of al-Qaeda and mujahidin activity. They appear to have exploited a visa regime described by a minister last month as “the major loophole in Britain’s border controls”.