Defence expert plays down new terror threat

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Defence expert plays down new terror threat

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First it was the United States and then Britain. Now it is Japan’s turn to warn its citizens against possible terrorist attacks in Europe.

All three countries have raised their alert levels and told their nationals to pay particular care and attention if visiting tourist attractions, especially in France and Germany, although anywhere on the continent could be affected.

Euronews spoke to one defence expert who believes there is no reason to be alarmed.

According to Joseph Henrotin: “As soon as you estimate there’s a permanent risk, all necessary measures are of course taken, but each country treats the threat differently. Europe is always on alert so there’s no particular reason now to believe we’re any more at risk than usual.”

However, what concerns Western intelligence services the most is the possibility that al-Qaeada linked groups could stage attacks like the deadly Bombay bombings in 2008.

“To organise multiple attacks, simultaneously, with the associated violence isn’t something easy to do. From the outside it might seem to be but in fact it’s very complicated. That’s why al-Qaeda can not succeed with such methods, it’s too difficult to organise,” says Henrotin.

Nonetheless, al-qaeda remains the number one threat to Europe as recognised by the bloc’s counter terrorism experts.

A threat, they say, that for now is best met by improving checks and controls of potential terrorists in each of the EU’s 27 members.