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Monday, February 26, 2007

Al-Qaeda Linked to Iraqi Chlorine Site

The terrorist organization al-Qaeda is believed to have operated a factory linked to recent chlorine attacks in Iraq, Reuters reported yesterday (see GSN, Feb. 22).

Eight people were killed and scores injured in two attacks last week involving explosions of vehicles carrying the chemical. The deaths have been attributed to the explosions rather than exposure to chlorine.

The U.S. military said a plant in Karma was connected to the attacks. A Feb. 20 raid on the facility uncovered al-Qaeda propaganda fliers and “interactive DVDs,” said Lt. Col. Valery Keaveny.

“This is absolutely a display that al-Qaeda is trying to adjust its barbaric tactics,” Keaveny said. “Is this a threat? Yes. Are we prepared to deal with it? Yes.”

U.S. forces discovered three 55-gallon barrels of chlorine, three barrels filled with nitroglycerine that could be used in explosives, mortar and artillery shells, crude explosives, five vehicles and propane tanks, Reuters reported.

“They had all the munitions, they had all the cars. The chemicals found were not weaponized yet, but they were probably planning to use them,” said Capt. Matt Gregory (Reuters/Gulf Times, Feb. 25).
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