Returning jihadis new risk for Europe
Paris, France, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- As many as 7,500 foreign jihadi fighters could have joined the anti-U.S. resistance in Iraq, a well-informed French intelligence source told UPI.
Reports that many of them may be heading back to Europe are raising concerns.
Claude Moniquet of the European Strategic Intelligence and Security Center in Brussels, who monitors Islamist terrorism, told UPI the Europeans are not adequately prepared to handle the influx.
The former jihadis -- now armed with hardened combat experience -- may become members of active or sleeper cells on which al-Qaida could call for future terrorist operations in Europe.
Reports of returning jihadis corroborates an earlier report by U.S. military intelligence sources nearly two weeks ago that a new trend is emerging in the Iraqi resistance with insurgents trying to rid themselves of foreign elements.
One source reports recent movement of jihadis trekking across the Iraqi-Syrian border this time heading out of Iraq.