Network terror

There is plenty of evidence suggesting closer coordination among the terrorist groups operating in northern Europe. This is alarming. If West Germany's Red Army faction, France's direct action, and Belgium's so-called fighting Communist cells have formed some kind of alliance, however loose, and also have links with Italian, Portuguese, and Middle East terrorists, then EEC governments are confronted by a new threat against which they have no collective mechanism. The foreign ministers' meeting in Rome has made a start, notwithstanding Italy, quite rightly, ruffling feathers by suggesting that France was less than vigorous in dealing with terrorist threats and was willing to grant sanctuary to all sorts of [people] posing as political refugees. Inevitably the Rome discussion was pretty generalized but at least there was some agreement on moves to counter the peril. There will now be a marked increase in formal and informal contacts between top European policemen and lawyers to exchange intelligence and discuss anti-terrorist measures. Professionals on the same network will prove much more useful than EEC summits producing high-sounding declarations. ----30--{et

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