Monday, December 05, 2005

Terrorist Says He Will Attack Australia If Returned

Jailed terrorist Saleh Jamal, one of a group of men alleged to have planned a militant strike on Sydney Harbour, has said he will attack Australia if forced to return There, a report said on Monday.
Terrorist Saleh Jamal
Jordanian-born Jamal, currently being held in a Lebanese prison, told The Australian newspaper that he had been only “30 percent likely” to have carried out an attack in Australia before he fled to Lebanon in early 2004. But he said he was now more determined to strike. “The Australian government has been chasing me for three years,” he said. “If they try to take me to Australia, I will crash a plane into the Harbour Bridge myself.” “I never want to go back to Australia. All I want is for my wife and child to come here to me, but the government will not let her out of the country. “Australia is like a paradise in many ways, but it is a sick place.” Jamal is serving five years at the maximum security Romieh Prison north of Beirut for possessing weapons and explosives but Lebanese officials are attempting to upgrade his charges to terrorist offences. Australian police allege Jamal recruited six men to launch an extremist strike in Sydney on New Years Eve 2003. Jamal had purchased a small boat and was accused of conducting surveillance on sites including the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. No attack occurred and no arrests were made. Before he left the country, Jamal was the key target in counter-terrorist Operation Pendennis, which concluded last month with 18 people being arrested on terrorist charges in Sydney and Melbourne. Jamal was on bail awaiting trial over a 1998 shooting at a Sydney police station when he fled to Lebanon on a false passport.