U.S. intel chief: ISIL has cells in UK, Germany, Italy

Special to WorldTribune.com

Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) has established cells in the UK, Germany, and Italy, the U.S. director of national intelligence said.

“We continue to see evidence of plotting on the part of ISIL in (the UK, Germany and Italy),” James Clapper said on April 25.

U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. /AP
U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. /AP

Clapper said the terror group had established underground cells such as those that carried out the deadly March terrorist attacks in Brussels and the November attacks in Paris.

The intel chief added that ISIL has “taken advantage to some extent of the migrant crisis in Europe, something which the nations I think have a growing awareness of.”

Matthew Levitt of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy told CNN that reports of ISIL’s activity in these countries “is not new” but added “it’s new that Clapper is saying it.”

Levitt said that Europe’s “biggest problem is a lack of seamless intelligence sharing and collaboration.”

Meanwhile, an ISIL cell has reportedly entered Sweden and is planning on carrying out attacks in Stockholm.

Iraqi security services reported that “seven or eight” ISIL jihadists are already in the country with the aim of attacking civilian targets in the capital.

The Swedish Security Service, national task force and the Stockholm Police have officially gone into a “heightened state of readiness” after receiving the Iraqi intelligence, Swedish media reports.

Intelligence services have identified some 300 people who have left Sweden to join jihadists in the Middle East since 2013.

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