The ISIS terror group is planning to take over Libya and use it as a gateway to wage war across almost all of southern Europe, the London Telegraph reported
A document written by an Islamic State (ISIS) operative in Libya says that the group plans to flood Libya with fighters from Iraq and Syria, and have them sail across the Mediterranean Sea pretending to be refugees on human trafficking vessels.
They would then target European cities and try to stage attacks on maritime shipping, according to the Quilliam Foundation, a British anti-radicalization group which said it had seen the document.
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The report comes just days after ISIS released a video showing the mass beheading of 21 Egyptian Christian guest workers on a beach in Libya. The video, which led Egypt to stage retaliatory bombings of ISIS positions in Libya, also included footage of a jihadist pointing north toward Europe and declaring: "We will conquer Rome, by Allah's permission."
The writer of the document is an ISIS propagandist who uses the alias Abu Arhim al-Libim, who boasts that the terror group is awash in weapons captured in Libya's 2011 civil war, when rebels seized mass quantities of armaments from longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi's military arsenal.
Some of the weaponry had been supplied to Gadhafi from Britain, which provided him with sniper rifles, machine guns, and ammunition.
Libim says northern Libya is less than 300 miles from some parts of the European mainland.
He adds that "the number of trips known as 'illegal immigration' from this coast, which are huge in number" could be an asset to jihadists looking to stage attacks in Europe.
"If this was even partially exploited and developed strategically, pandemonium could be wrought in the southern European states and it is even possible that there could be a closure of shipping lines and targeting of Crusader ships and tankers," Libim writes.
European security experts agree that ISIS could well try to smuggle fighters disguised as refugees or human trafficking victims into Europe.
Italy's interior ministry estimates that at least 200,000 refugees and immigrants are poised to make the crossing from Libya to Sicily or to the island of Lampedusa — the nation's southernmost territory.
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Last year more than 170,000 arrived in Italy by boat, according to the Telegraph. These included tens of thousands of Syrians fleeing that nation's civil war.
Earlier this week, Italian Interior Minister Angelino Alfano urged NATO to intervene against ISIS to defend "the future of the Western world,"
and Italy's defense minister said the country could not tolerate "a caliphate ruling across the shores from us."
Egypt's ambassador to Britain, Nasser Kamel, warned UK residents to brace for "boats full of terrorists" unless decisive action was taken against ISIS in Libya.
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