Plot was “al-Qaeda supported” by al-Qaeda elements “located in Iran” consisting of “direction and guidance.”
Canadian police and intelligence agencies will announce later today they have thwarted a plot to carry out a major terrorist attack, arresting two suspects in Montreal and Toronto, CBC News has learned.
Highly placed sources tell CBC News the alleged plotters have been under surveillance for more than a year in Quebec and southern Ontario.
The two men are expected to appear in court tomorrow.
The investigation was part of a cross-border operation involving Canadian law enforcement agencies, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
According to a Reuters report, U.S. law enforcement and national security sources said the alleged plot targeted a railroad between Toronto and New York City.
From News conference:
Charged two people, alleging “al-Qaeda supported” conspiracy to derail train. Neither person a Canadian citizen.
Al-Qaeda elements “located in Iran.” No indication “state-supported.” Support was “direction and guidance.”
From a written statement handed out:
Today, the RCMP arrested two individuals and charged them with conspiring to carry out a terrorist attack against a VIA passenger train. The accused have been charged under sections 248, 235 (1), 83.2, 83.18, 83.21 of the Criminal Code of Canada. As a result of extensive collaborative efforts, the RCMP was able to disrupt the threat early. While the RCMP believed that these individuals had the capacity and intent to carry out these criminal acts, there was no imminent threat to the general public, rail employees, train passengers or infrastructure.
The two accused, Chiheb ESSEGHAIER and Raed JASER, who live in the Montreal and Toronto area were conspiring to carry out a terrorist attack against a VIA passenger train. Charges include conspiring to carry out an attack against, and conspiring to murder persons unknown for the benefit of, at the direction of, or in association with a terrorist group.
Update: I guess it depends on what the meaning of “decimated” is:
There will be a live press conference at 3:30 p.m. Eastern, watch below: