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European Union police warn that more attacks by IS militants are likely

PARIS – Europe’s top police agency issued a stark warning Monday: Islamic State extremists will keep attempting lethal attacks on soft targets in Europe as the militant group increasingly goes global.

 Some 2½ months after suicide bombers and gunmen killed 130 people in Paris, the Europol agency said, “there is every reason to expect that IS, IS-inspired terrorists or another religiously inspired terrorist group will undertake a terrorist attack somewhere in Europe again, but particularly in France, intended to cause mass casualties among the civilian population.”

The sobering conclusions reached by experts from the European Union’s chief agency for law enforcement cooperation and EU member states make clear that many, perhaps virtually all in Europe, may be at risk.

“Without reliable intelligence on the intentions, activities and contacts and travels of known terrorists it is nearly impossible to exactly predict when and where the next terrorist attack will take place, and what form it will take,” the Europol report said.

Hours before the report was issued, a new video was released by the Islamic State group celebrating the killers who carried out the Nov. 13 attacks in the French capital – while also threatening fresh bloodshed.

The grisly recording ends with one militant holding a severed head, footage of British Prime Minister David Cameron giving a speech, and an IS warning that whoever stands with the unbelievers “will be a target for our swords.”

The 17-minute video, released Sunday, shows the extent of the planning that went into the multiple attacks in Paris, which French authorities have said from the beginning were planned in Syria. All nine men seen in the video died in the Paris attacks or their aftermath.

All but two of the attackers were from Belgium and France and spoke fluent French. The two others – identified by their noms de guerre as Iraqis – spoke in Arabic.

 Seven of the militants, including a 20-year-old who was the youngest of the group, were shown standing behind bound captives, described as “apostates,” who were either beheaded or shot.

“Soon on the Champs-Elysees,” says Samy Amimour, who was raised in a Paris suburb, as he holds a captive’s head aloft.

The Nov. 13 attacks targeted a packed concert hall, a restaurant and cafe, and a soccer match at the French national stadium. The video glorifying the Kalashnikov-wielding gunmen and suicide bombers responsible for that carnage was probably also meant as a recruitment tool.

http://www.nwherald.com/2016/01/26/european-union-police-warn-that-more-attacks-by-is-militants-are-likely/a6m912c/

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