Thursday, December 22, 2016

Yes, it was a Jihader

Who the hell else?

Fingerprints in Berlin truck match those of suspect Anis Amri

And there are the usual recriminations based on wholly unrealistic notions regarding what security forces can or should do.

Germany’s security services are facing mounting pressure to explain how Amri could have carried out the attack when he had been under covert surveillance for several months and was known to multiple intelligence agencies for apparent ties to Islamist extremists.

A deputy chairman of Merkel’s Christian Democratic party accused the intelligence agencies of incompetence, saying Wednesday’s reports on security failures had left him shocked.

Amri registered in the North Rhine-Westphalia region when he entered Germany in July 2015 and had been based mainly in Berlin since February this year. 

He may have escaped the security agencies’ scrutiny due to a mix-up between regional authorities.

“So the attitude seems to be: he’s off to Berlin, so the case is closed for us here, now it’s Berlin’s turn,” the CDU deputy chair, Armin Laschet, told Deutschlandfunk radio station on Thursday. 

He called for better coordination between security agencies across the federal state system.

A European arrest warrant for Amri was issued on Wednesday, two days after the attack which killed 12 people and injured dozens more. 

He appears to have used six different aliases and three different nationalities.

Amri, who had his request for asylum turned down in July this year, was already known to several security agencies because of his links to radical Islamism, according to Ralf Jäger, the interior minister for North Rhine-Westphalia.

Jäger said an investigation was launched earlier this year into suspicions Amri might be preparing “a serious act of violence against the state”. 

He was added to the government’s central terrorist watchlist in January and his telecommunications were monitored until September.

US officials said Amri was on a US no-fly list, had researched bomb-making online and had been in contact with Isis at least once, the New York Times reported.

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