France: Suspect physicist discussed attacks on French army

France: Suspect physicist discussed attacks on French army

In France having email discussions with al-Qaeda re army attacks is, apparently, reason enough for arrest. Go figure.

According to Le Figaro, Hicheur wanted to punish the army and, more generally, France, for its involvement in Afghanistan. The French authorities are keeping an eye on radical Islamist sites, as those 'lone wolves' tend to consult and get information from such sites. They have identified more than 20 'particularly harmful' ones, and were surprised at the number of hits from France. (FR)

A French nuclear physicist discussed possible terrorist attacks targeting France's army in e-mail exchanges with North Africa's al-Qaida branch before his arrest last month, the Paris prosecutor's office said Tuesday.

Adlene Hicheur, a 32-year-old Frenchman of Algerian origin, had worked on the Large Hadron Collider — the world's largest atom smasher — as well as at a technology institute in neighboring Switzerland before he was taken into custody at his home in Vienne, France, on Oct. 8.

His alleged e-email conversations discussed no concrete plans for an operation but cited examples of possible targets, the prosecutor's office said.

Confirming a report that appeared in the regional newspaper Le Dauphine Libere, the prosecutor's office said one potential target was a French army brigade specialized in mountain combat, which is based near where Hicheur lived. The 27th Mountain Infantry Brigade currently has about 1,000 troops in Afghanistan.

The possibility of striking French businesses was also raised, the prosecutor's office said.


Source: AP (English)

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