London, Nov 18 (ANI): The nightmare scenario of a Mumbai-style massacre in Europe has loomed closer to reality, with the German Interior Minister having issued a warning that there were "concrete indications of a series of attacks planned for the end of November," and French and British security services having been put on a higher state of alert after getting similar warnings from agents.
Western intelligence agencies have long recognised that their countries are vulnerable to armed multiple attacks on crowded areas, as they recall how the terror in India was unleashed at ten different locations, SKY News reported.
Radical Islamists, carrying authentic European passports, have been very hard to track, it added.
"There has been a steady trickle of volunteers heading for training in places like Pakistan," a Western security source said.
"They are potentially great assets to the terrorists because they are able to get back into their home countries much more easily than foreigners," said the insider, adding, "It's not a case of if - but when."
A major problem for any terrorist group hoping to use rifles and grenades in an attack inside the UK is the simple difficulty of obtaining the weaponry, the report said.
Though small arms are relatively easy to obtain in mainland Europe or from neighbouring states and to smuggle across borders, the UK's strict gun laws and the surrounding seas make obtaining the sort of firepower which could sustain a three or four-day terrorist operation on the Mumbai scale very difficult, it added.
Still, Europe's security services remain deeply concerned over radicalised young men from their own countries, who pose the biggest immediate danger.
Sources have also warned that terrorist groups are working on new forms of attack that have not been seen before.
The UK can anticipate a continued heavy presence of police and other security services on the streets of the major cities. (ANI)