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Fear of suicide bombings in Greece

10 August 2015 / 15:08:02  GRReporter
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In Sunday's To Vima, an article by Vassilis Lambropoulos reveals several low profile cases investigated by the national security forces. Among them are the growing peril of attacks by jihadists on Greek territory, the electronic attack targeting the interior ministry's computer systems, as well as the bomb explosion near the home of a businessman whose name subsequently cropped up in the investigation of smuggling and human trafficking.

There are concerns among Greek security services based on information that Islamic State supporters might be planning to hit refugees from the Middle East in Greece. This might be done through a suicide bombing similar to those carried out in Iraq and Syria.

Special measures

Sources indicate that this is the reason in the last days for the special security measures applied around the Foreigners police Directorate at Petrou Ralli St, as well as some other venues, which are the gathering points of refugees, mostly Syrians arriving in the country en masse. Police officers are commissioned to perform not only thorough searches and check the luggage of the new arrivals, but also to monitor the area outside police stations.

Special attention should be given to individuals who are oddly dressed for the season because explosives might be hidden under their clothes. As is well known, suicide bombers have struck police offices in Iraq and Syria, as well as army buildings where new recruits gather. The Greek police has also been asked to provide surveillance across other places frequented by immigrants who have come from the war zones of the Middle East.

According to sources, a possible IS bombing targeting refugees from the Middle East and carried out on European territory might constitute a retaliation against the Christians in the region, and on the other hand convey a message that refugees cannot feel safe anywhere. According to Greek police officials, "attacks might also target Muslim communities, mainly of moderate Sunnis and some others, to scare them into joining the IS ranks. Another group at high risk are the Kurdish refugees in the country, as the jihadists are in constant war with the Kurdish communities, mostly along the border between Iraq and Turkey."

Regarding the incoming signals on the movement of jihadists, law enforcers and secret services are talking about a 'limited information traffic' of 5-6 messages a month, which however are of no particular interest.

What has the blast revealed?

Meanwhile, the blast in front of the home of a 63-year-old entrepreneur on Ilektras Street in the Athens suburb of Vouliagmeni last Monday evening now apparently has different implications. The same businessman came under attack in September 2013, when unknown assailants broke into his home, shot him with a Scorpion submachine gun and wounded him seriously.

At the same time, it transpired, although not confirmed officially, that a year ago another bombing, this time with a drone, targeted the same residence.

The entrepreneur himself claimed that the 2013 attack was a mere coincidence. After the last explosion however, he accused a Turkish businessman, with whom he had dealings through people in Bulgaria. He also added mysteriously that the same foreign national had in his crosshairs a relative of the perpetrator of the attack.

Now, however, it becomes clear that the name of the same businessman features in documents handed to the judicial authorities investigating the former Coast Guard officers who had collaborated with human traffickers.

The same businessman allegedly "has committed a number of crimes and has an offshore company in the name of a former senior Coast Guard officer." Several years ago, the businessman was investigated by the Greek National Intelligence Service, the Israeli Mossad and the Greek Financial and Economic Crime Unit (S.D.O.E.) in connection with his business in southern Turkey, probable contacts with Kurdish separatists, and even with the Turkish secret services as well. In spite of all that, he has not been subject to prosecution.

Tags: security forces investigation suicide bombing jihadists immigrants
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