Report says separatists behind most EU attacks
European Union countries were the targets of nearly 500 acts of terror in 2006, one of which was an Islamic organization’s failed attempt to inflict mass casualties in Germany, according to a recent report by the European Police Office, or Europol.
The failed effort in Germany represented the only documented attempt carried out by an Islamic Group in the EU in 2006, the report stated. Nonetheless, nearly half of the suspects arrested in the EU were allegedly affiliated with Islamic terror groups.
In its March 2007 “EU Terrorism and Situation Report,” Europol reveals that the majority of terrorist attacks — nearly 380 — were perpetrated by separatist terrorist groups targeting France and Spain.
“The attacks in Madrid in 2004 and in London in 2005 resulted in mass casualties, and the failed bomb attacks in Germany, together with a considerable number of plots disrupted in 2006, are a strong reminder that this threat prevails,” wrote Max-Peter Ratzel, Europol director.
In the Germany case last July, two men were suspected of planting two homemade bombs packed into suitcases in trains in Dortmund and Koblenz. The bombs failed to detonate.
In recent days, German media outlets have been reporting that the Islamic Jihad Union could be involved in a terror plot against U.S. bases in Germany.
EU countries in 2006 reported criminal investigations into 59 different terrorist groups. Of these, nine were on the EU list of terrorist organizations. A total of 706 individuals suspected of terrorism offenses were arrested in 15 member states.