Saturday, September 20, 2014

20-Sep-14: Iran is not commenting but Kenya may have just thwarted another Iranian terror attack

Kenya's Daily Nation breaks the news [Source]
Reuters reported on Friday about worrying terror-related events unfolding in East Africa:
Kenyan anti-terror police have detained two Iranian men using forged Israeli passports to enter the East African country, on suspicion that they may have been involved in a plan to carry out an attack there, officials said on Friday.
Kenyan security agencies have been on alert following several gun and grenade attacks and the killing of 67 people in an attack by Islamist gunmen on Nairobi's Westgate shopping mall last September.
Mwenda Njoka, spokesman for the Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government, said the two Iranians had passports identifying them as Israeli nationals and had tried to enter Kenya through its main airport on Thursday. "The Iranians are suspected to be terrorists, either coming here as their final destination or in transit to another destination. The matter is being handled by the anti-terror police and Interpol," Njoka told Reuters...
They seem to be saying ("involved in a plan to carry out an attack there") that the attack would have been in Kenya. But when you look at the Israeli reports, like this one from Ynet ["Iranians caught in Kenya carrying fake Israeli passports"] they imply the attack would have been in Israel, and that one of the suspects is not a male:
Two Iranians in their early 20s, a man and a woman, were arrested in the Kenyan capital Nairobi earlier this week when they were discovered using fake Israeli passports and going by the names Adi and Avshalom. This is not the first time Iranian nationals are caught abroad with Israeli passports. These passports are very popular in the world because of the relatively extensive freedom of movement they grant their owners. The difference this time, however, was that the two did not intend to use the passports to move freely in the western world, but in order to enter Israel. The two tried to board a Brussels Airlines flight to Belgium, and from there board a flight to Tel Aviv. They were arrested at the Nairobi Airport and taken to the Kenyan immigration office, which informed Israeli authorities of the arrest. The arrest was also reported to the Israeli Embassy in Kenya.
Haaretz recalls previous terror attempts in other places in which Iranians were apprehended with Israeli passports:
In 2013, an Iranian man was arrested at the Israeli embassy in Nepal, after he was found using an Israeli passport to scout out potential terror targets. An Iranian agent was deported from India in 2012 for spying on the Chabad House in Koregaon Park and other Jewish targets; an additional Iranian spy ring was likewise discovered in Turkey.
And Reuters reminds us of some relevant Kenyan background,and again Iranians:
Two Iranian men were sentenced to life in prison by a Kenyan court in May last year for planning to carry out bombings in Nairobi and other cities. They have appealed their sentence. The two were found guilty of planning attacks and possessing 15 kg (33 lb) of explosives. Kenyan investigators said at the time it was unclear whether they had ties to al Qaeda-linked militants in Somalia or were part of another network.
A Kenyan source adds that on the same day and in the same place
Two Syrians were also arrested at JKIA for using forged Bulgarian and Greek passports. The two were also in possession of fake Algerian and Moroccan passports. [Daily Nation, Nairobi, Kenya, yesterday]
The same Kenyan source says the suspects are aged "between 19 and 20 years".

When we posted here 16 months ago ["3-May-13: Kenya discovers it is hosting a "vast network" of terrorists; convicts two Iranians and hopes for the best"] about the conviction of those two Iranian would-be bombers in Kenya, we referred to a BBC news report which managed to describe the threat and the crimes and the dangers - but without once calling the Iranians terrorists, which of course they are. 

However at the end of that 2013 report, the BBC's editors slipped in some startling news that others had not mentioned: the Kenyan police investigations showed that the convicted Iranian terrorists (though that's not what the BBC called them)
have a vast network in the country meant to execute explosive attacks against government installations, public gatherings and foreign establishments," said Sgt Erick Opagal of Kenya's Anti-Terrorism Police Unit... [BBC]
We have noted here over and again (for instance, "24-Mar-13: Seed of evil: Whitewashing terror at the BBC" and then again this past Thursday - see "18-Sep-14: Is it activism when they say they need to behead you?") about the scandalous way in which the BBC's editors seem to be so shy about calling terrorists 'terrorists'. In reality, it's not shyness but a mendacious and foolish kind of political correctness that does far more harm than any possible good. That BBC policy is online here: "BBC: Language when Reporting Terrorism"]

That 2013 BBC report also failed to point out what other sources at the time, like Associated Press, had mentioned: that the Kenyan police discovered the two convicted Iranian agents
are members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Quds Force, an elite and secretive unit... Iranian agents are suspected in attacks or thwarted attacks around the globe in recent years, including in Azerbaijan, Thailand and India. Most of the plots had connections to Israeli targets.
The BBC Persian Service reported on the arrests today,
noting that Iran has not reacted [Source]
At the time (May 2013), we pointed out that Iran's normally garrulous English-language mouthpiece PressTV ("the first Iranian international news network, broadcasting in English on a round-the-clock basis... staffed with outstanding Iranian and foreign media professionals") had published not a word about the Iranian agents or their criminal conviction for terrorism. 

We have just checked there again tonight. Unsurprisingly, not a word, as far as we can tell, about any Iranians being arrested in Kenya

Readers of the BBC's Persian-language news service can read all about it here. Interestingly the Persian text does mention terror. Could it be that those deplorable BBC's guidelines don't apply when Persian-speaking audiences are being addressed?

Naturally, those Iranians with the forged Israeli passports are innocent until proven guilty. They are also not assumed to be members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Quds Force until otherwise determined. Stay tuned.

No comments: