Intelligence warning: ISIS plans attack on UK

Armed police officers patrolling in St Pancras station, London, on Nov 17.
Armed police officers patrolling in St Pancras station, London, on Nov 17. PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON • The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is planning an attack on Britain as a follow-up to its terror strike in Paris last month, a senior European counter-terrorism official has warned.

Intelligence obtained by European security agencies indicates that British ISIS fighters have been tasked by senior operatives in the so-called caliphate to return home to carry out the attack, the official told CNN.

It was not clear how imminent the threat was, nor the specific location of the attack, but the official said concerns have been compounded by the House of Commons vote on Wednesday authorising British air strikes against ISIS in Syria.

The official did not clarify whether the intelligence was linked to the arrest of a British ISIS operative linked to "Jihadi John" in Turkey last month.

The terrorist, Aine Lesley Davis, was arrested in Istanbul days before the Paris attacks on Nov 13 while on his way to Europe to deliver orders for planned attacks, according to a Turkish official.

Davis was arrested in a joint operation between Britain's MI6 service and Turkish intelligence to monitor the movement of a messenger linked to Jihadi John - the terrorist notorious for appearing in videos featuring the beheading of foreign hostages - in the Syrian city of Raqqa, according to Turkey's Hurriyet newspaper.

The arrest yielded intelligence on possible locations in Syria of Jihadi John.

Air strikes in Raqqa that American officials say killed Jihadi John - whose real name was Mohammed Emwazi - followed hours later on Nov 12.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 05, 2015, with the headline 'Intelligence warning: ISIS plans attack on UK'. Print Edition | Subscribe