Skip to comments.Milan cell linked to al-Qaida operatives
Posted on 06/30/2002 1:14:33 AM PDT by sarcasm
MILAN, Italy Italian anti-terrorism investigators, poring over hundreds of hours of surreptitiously recorded conversations among members of Europe's most important al-Qaida outpost, say they are convinced a cell in Milan supplied false passports and other bogus documents to al-Qaida operatives who may have succeeded in entering the United States.
The absence of any apparent contact between the Milan al-Qaida operation and the Sept. 11 hijackers, who spawned their deadly plot in Hamburg, Germany, could mean that other potential al-Qaida terrorists managed to take up residence in the United States before Sept. 11 and may still be there awaiting a signal to strike.
That possibility was underscored last week when U.S. authorities confirmed the authenticity of a declaration by the chief al-Qaida spokesman, Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, that the organization retains "the capability to threaten America and execute such threats."
In Washington, D.C., the FBI declined to comment on the investigations of what a spokesman called "our European partners." But after Sept. 11, U.S. officials disclosed that they were monitoring several suspected al-Qaida cells in the United States, and CBS News last week cited intelligence reports appearing to confirm that "al-Qaida is still active in the United States."