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Home >> World
UPDATED: 10:20, May 31, 2006
Switzerland not safe from terrorist attacks: report
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Switzerland is a safe place in many people's eyes, but in fact it faces the real threat of terrorism, according to a Swiss internal security report published on Tuesday.

Switzerland is not thought to be a primary target of terrorist groups, but situated in the heart of Europe the risk of operations by Islamic extremists in Switzerland "are becoming a real possibility," the report said.

The Federal Police Office's annual report noted that right- and left-wing extremism, human trafficking and the activities of criminal organisations were also major concerns in 2005.

"While there is no hard evidence of preparations for attacks by terrorists - individuals or groups - the situation could change rapidly," it added.

The suicide bombings in London in 2005 had shown that Europe was not invulnerable to attacks by small, decentralised cells operating locally.

The report also drew attention to the impact of unresolved conflicts and problems in other countries, which it said could provoke strong reactions in members of violent extremist groups based in Switzerland.

The report called for a strengthening of national intelligence gathering along the lines of its European neighbors.

Without better intelligence Switzerland not only loses credibility, but it risks becoming a favoured base for extremists, it said.

The Federal Police Office repeated its demands for a range of new measures to be able to better monitor telephone calls and emails, carry out surveillance work and secretly access computer files.

Additional causes for concern in the 2005 annual report remain human trafficking and increasing violence in prostitution circles.

The activities of criminal organisations are also put under the spotlight.

Source: Xinhua

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