RealNews

Report: Italy Is al-Qaida Departure Point

Italy has become a departure point for suicide attackers linked to al-Qaida and active against U.S.-led forces in Iraq, according to an Italian intelligence report released Tuesday. The document also warned that forces staging anti-coalition attacks in Iraq might expand their scope and targets. In December, Italian investigators said they shut down a European network suspected of recruiting Islamic militants to carry out attacks on U.S.-led forces in Iraq. The investigators said the volunteers were drawn from Muslim youths living on the fringes of society in Western Europe, including Italy. Evidence gathered over the past six months shows “the strategic importance of our country … not only as a transit point and for logistic and financial support, but also as a departure point for would-be `kamikaze’ or holy warriors” in Iraq, read the biannual report put together by the Italian secret services. The report said many of the extremists stationed in Italy have links to North African terror groups and to al-Qaida operatives believed active in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq. Full Story

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