Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

August 12, 2006

UK terror plot: links to 7/7?

Filed under: Aviation Security,Investigation & Enforcement,Terrorist Threats & Attacks — by Christian Beckner on August 12, 2006

The pace of reporting on the UK terror plot has slowed down somewhat in the last 24 hours, but there have been a number of interesting developments today:

1. The Times of London reports today on potential links between this plot and the July 7, 2005 transit attacks in London:

….Scotland Yard is investigating possible links between the men arrested on Thursday and other British terrorists, including the July 7 bombers. They are concerned that some of those now in custody visited Pakistan last year at the same time as two of the London bombers. Pakistani intelligence sources are examining whether any of those arrested on Thursday attended the same madrassa, or religious school, as the 7/7 bombers.

2. MSNBC is reporting this afternoon on a disagreement between US and UK officials earlier this week on the timing of efforts to roll up the plot. According to MSNBC, the UK officials wanted to wait, and see where the threads of the plot led; the US officials wanted to act, fearing that an attack could take place. The report asserted that US officials threatened to act on their own against the Pakistani suspects, prompting the British officials to move faster to arrest the individuals in the UK. No word yet from official sources on this report.

3. Fox News was reporting earlier that the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi is potentially connected to the plot. A story in The Hindu looks at a broader net of Pakistan-based terror groups that might be connected to the plot.

4. The situation is improving but still problematic at airports in the UK, with many cancellations and extensive delays. Insurance companies in the UK refuse to insure valuables checked in the cargo hold, raising a new set of concerns about the UK’s emergency measures. The aviation system in the United States returned to a state of relative normalcy yesterday, as travellers were prepared for the new policies. NPR reports here on Sec. Chertoff’s press conference at National Airport on Friday afternoon.

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