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UK was not a terrorist target according to Belgian suspect

Interrogation of “the man in the hat” disclosed in British court “There was no plan to target England,” said Mohamed Abrini, suspected of having been involved in the Paris and Brussels bombings, during his interrogation by the Belgian police. His testimony was disclosed on Monday (28 November) in a British court.

Arrested on 9 April and detained in Belgium, Abrini was identified as “the man in the hat” who accompanied the two suicide bombers at Brussels airport in the 22 March attacks.

He is also suspected of having planned the attacks in Paris on 13 November, 2015, which left 130 people dead.

A trial started in London last Thursday against Zakaria Boufassil, charged in the UK for handing over, with Mohammed Ali Ahmed, another accomplice, a sum of money to Mohamed Abrini in July 2015.

Part of the interrogation of Mohamed Abrini, carried out on 21 April by Belgian police, was read out before the London court in Kingston.

Mohamed Abrini said that his travels to London, Birmingham and Manchester in the summer of 2015 “were not reconnaissance trips to prepare attacks.”

“There was no plan to target England,” he said. “From what I know, it’s France that has been declared as the enemy of the Islamic state.”

“I think that Britain has more developed secret services and better monitoring techniques … and therefore it’s more difficult to attack it,” he told the Belgian police.

He added that the money that was given to him was not “intended for a terrorist network”, judging “the sum too low”. “To carry out attacks, you need a lot of money,” he said.

The Brussels Times (Source: Belga)