French Report New Threat of Terrorist Attack in Europe

October 17, 2010

PARIS — Saudi intelligence officials have informed France that Al Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen may be planning an attack in France or Europe, the French interior minister said Sunday.

The minister, Brice Hortefeux, said in an interview broadcast on French radio and television that France had received the information “just a few days ago.”

Mr. Hortefeux described it as “a new message from the Saudi services telling us that Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was without doubt active, or planned to be active” in Europe, “and notably, France.”

“The threat is real and our vigilance is total,” he said, noting that he met last week in Paris with the Yemeni president, Ali Abdullah Saleh.

An official in Washington familiar with Mr. Hortefeux’s broadcast remarks confirmed on Sunday that Saudi intelligence officials had in the past few days sent information to Paris warning of possible attacks in France by Al Qaeda’s branch in Yemen.

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