Washington: The New York City continues to be at the risk of a terrorist attack even after the killing of al Qaeda’s longtime chief Osama bin Laden, city police chief said Sunday.
“The elimination of Osama bin Laden was an important milestone, but not a game-changer. We’re still very much at risk,” New York City Police Chief Ray Kelly told the ABC news in an interview.
“We’re concerned, as we get closer to the 9/11/11 memorial, because we know Osama bin Laden spoke about that date twice in the last two-year period,” he said.
He was apparently referring to the information obtained from the materials seized from the Abbottabad residence of bin Laden, in which the al-Qaeda leader was reportedly planning to have a major terrorist attack on New York City on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
“The federal government, local and state authorities are very much aware of the threat and are on alert,” he said.
Kelly said the New York City Police Department has a task force in its intelligence division that looks at white supremacist/anti-government groups and individuals.
“In fact, just a few days before the Norway massacre, we had a teleconference with our century partners — this is 100 law enforcement agencies in the northeast quadrant of the country — and that was the specific subject. We talked about certain groups and individuals that we’re concerned about,” he said.
But it’s an issue that can pop up, you know, quickly, without any advanced notice, because these individuals play their cards very closely. They don’t show their hand. Just a few blocks from where you’re sitting, we had a white supremacist walk into the Holocaust Museum in 2009, shoot and kill one of the security guards. He himself was shot, but clearly he had mayhem in mind,” Kelly said.
“So it is a ongoing issue that law enforcement has to continue to focus on, and I believe we are,” he said.
“There are individuals who get together and sort of follow a neo-Nazi philosophy, not unlike Anders Breivik in Norway. But they are difficult to spot. And to a certain extent, they tend to get together in rural areas. They stay away from large city centers,” he noted.
“But in New York, we have to be concerned about someone planning or plotting an event away from the city and it coming into New York. So we’re on a lookout for this sort of thing, but it’s difficult to identify,” Kelly said. Zeenews