WND, by Aaron Klein, Jan. 15, 2015:
Two people were killed in a raid on suspected Islamic radicals Thursday in the Belgian town of Verviers, according to local media.
The raid comes three days after WND exclusively reported there are at least 20 sleeper cells with a combined total of 120 to 180 jihadists ready to act in France, Germany and Belgium.
WND further reported two days later that intelligence information collected by European and Arab countries indicates there is a specific threat against Belgium.
Local officials Thursday said two people have been killed in an anti-terror operation in eastern Belgium.
The BBC is quoting a Belgian TV station saying a third person was wounded in the raid in the town of Verviers and that several arrests were made.
The Agence-France Presse news agency quoted a source in the mayor’s office stating “an operation is under way.” Another official said the raid was “jihadist-related.”
According to unconfirmed reports, raids were taking place elsewhere in Belgium.
As WND reported, chatter within jihadist groups combined with intelligence information collected by European and Arab countries indicates the next major terrorist attack may target the Netherlands or Belgium, according to informed Middle Eastern security officials speaking to WND.
The security officials said a joint effort between European and Arab security services has resulted in the drafting of a list of hundreds of names of potential jihadists, mostly European residents, who could be a part of a series of sleeper cells in Europe. There is an effort to track down the locations of the suspects.
The officials said the list also includes more than 100 suspects who are originally from Chechnya as well as foreign suspects from Palestinian camps in Syria and Lebanon, some of whom may currently be in Europe.
On Tuesday, WND reported Algeria’s intelligence services passed information to several European countries indicating there are at least 20 sleeper cells with a combined total of 120 to 180 jihadists ready to act in France, Germany and Belgium.
Many members of the cells were trained in Tunisia, according to an Algerian intelligence report that was shared with WND by a European official. The report was provided to European interior ministers.
The document also deals with the issue of European citizens traveling to Iraq and Syria to join Islamic terrorist organizations. The Algerian report fingers Saudi-financed mosques in Europe as helping to lead the recruitment of European jihadists to fight in Syria and Iraq.
The Algerians identified by name more than 100 clerics in Western Europe as leaders of the recruitment campaign, which the Algerian report says is coordinated with Salafists mostly located in Tunisia, Yemen and Libya.
Earlier this week, French law enforcement officers were directed to carry their weapons at all times “because terror sleeper cells have been activated over the last 24 hours in the country,” according to a French police source who attended a briefing Saturday and spoke to CNN terror analyst Samuel Laurent.
Amedy Coulibaly, the terrorist suspect killed last Friday after holding citizens hostage in a kosher market in Paris, made phone calls about targeting police officers in France, the source told CNN.
Hostages inside the market also reported hearing Coulibaly speaking on the phone about the targeting of police officers in France.
According to reports, the hostages said Coulibaly told them “militants are going to come – there are going to be more and more.”
According to reports, the hostages said Coulibaly told them that “militants are going to come.”
“There are going to be more and more.”
BRUSSELS—Belgian security forces killed two terror suspects with links to Syria in a fierce shootout in the eastern city of Verviers on Thursday and arrested another, foiling a major and imminent attack against police buildings, authorities said.