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Viewing cable 05PARIS482, JUDGE BRUGUIERE DISCUSSES ONGOING TERRORISM

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
05PARIS482 2005-01-27 09:09 2010-11-30 16:04 SECRET Embassy Paris
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 PARIS 000482 

SIPDIS 

STATE FOR S/CT 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/26/2014 
TAGS: PREL PINR PTER FR
SUBJECT: JUDGE BRUGUIERE DISCUSSES ONGOING TERRORISM 
CHALLENGES 

REF: 04 PARIS 8760 AND PREVIOUS 

Classified By: POLITICAL MINISTER COUNSELOR JOSIAH ROSENBLATT, FOR REAS 
ONS 1.4 B/D 

1. (S) Summary: During a January 24 lunch hosted by the 
Ambassador, top terrorism investigating judge Jean-Louis 
Bruguiere discussed a number of ongoing investigations he was 
leading and also commented on a variety of terrorism-related 
issues. He believed that 2005 would be a dangerous year, 
given the expertise demonstrated during terrorist attacks in 
2004, and thought in particular that Europe and Asia would be 
targeted. End summary. 

2. (SBU) Bruguiere heads the Paris-based section of 
investigating judges that focus on terrorism issues. He and 
fellow investigating judge Jean-Francois Ricard concentrate 
on international and Islamic terrorism, while the other 
investigating judges examine Basque, Corsican and 
Breton-related terrorism. Bruguiere is by far the most 
visible and media-savvy of the terrorism investigating 
judges. Just in the past month, he has been the subject of 
extensive profiles in Le Monde, a French center-left daily 
newspaper, and the Financial Times. 

--------------------- 
INTERNATIONAL THREATS 
--------------------- 

3. (S) Bruguiere said he believed both Europe and Asia were 
front-line targets for terrorism in 2005. One essential 
problem with the European Union response, said Bruguiere, was 
that different countries had different institutional 
approaches to dealing with terrorist threats, despite the 
fact that many EU states had open borders via the Schengen 
agreement. He cited Germany and the Netherlands as two 
countries whose legal and administrative institutions made 
them difficult partners, despite their political will. 
Bruguiere speculated that those countries with direct 
experience of terrorism, such as the U.S., Spain, France and 
the U.K., had more fully developed their counter-terrorism 
capabilities. Potential terrorists knew which countries 
offered comparatively greater protections, and they took 
advantage of these opportunities within the EU, said 
Bruguiere. 

4. (S) Al-Qaida-linked terrorists demonstrated their ability 
to strike within Europe not only during the Madrid bombings, 
but also during the 2004 Istanbul bombings, said Bruguiere. 
He noted that British financial and diplomatic institutions 
were targeted in Istanbul at the exact time that President 
Bush was in the U.K. Bruguiere also mentioned his ongoing 
concern with the Caucasus and Chechnya. He believes that 
al-Qaida terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has an extensive 
network in the region. The Caucasus, said Bruguiere, are 
only "a three-hour flight to Paris." In order to combat this 
mosaic of threats, Bruguiere said European countries needed 
to undertake two key actions: further sensitize their 
populations and strengthen the crackdown on informal 
financial networks, especially neighborhood storefronts and 
Pakistani-origin hawalas. 

5. (S) Bruguiere also cited Asia as a particular area of 
concern. He and Ricard had discovered a Japan-based network 
after arresting and interrogating French citizen and longtime 
Japanese resident Lionel Dumont. Bruguiere said he believed 
terrorism in Asia would target financial centers. He was 
particularly concerned by the Pakistani-based terrorist 
organization Lashkar-i-Tayyiba. 

----------------------- 
DOMESTIC INVESTIGATIONS 
----------------------- 

6. (S) Bruguiere and Ricard's investigation into French 
nationals going to fight in Iraq (reftel) led to several 
arrests in the morning of January 24, Bruguiere said 
(additional reporting septel). He said their investigation 
had found juveniles as young as 13 trying to reach Iraq. 
Their investigation had not revealed formal recruitment 
networks, said Bruguiere, but rather a number of autonomous 
attempts to go on jihad to Iraq. The most common route for 
those trying to reach Iraq was through Syria and its many 
madrasas and other prayer centers. He noted that the 
conflict in Iraq has emerged as a powerful recruitment tool 
for terrorism. 

7. (S) Responding to a question regarding false documents, 
Bruguiere said that the market for French passports was quite 
strong, but that French police were increasingly able to 
detect false papers when they came across them. Passports 
from Maghreb countries were also in demand, said Bruguiere, 
because holders of such passports were given visa-free entry 
rights to Middle East countries, especially Syria. Bruguiere 
said he remained confident regarding the ongoing trial of 
Djamel Beghal and four of Beghal's associates. (The "Beghal 
network" is accused of plotting to bomb the U.S. Embassy in 
Paris.) Bruguiere said he had heard from prosecutorial 
sources that Beghal's defense was not going well. 

8. (C) Bruguiere praised U.S.-French counter-terrorism 
cooperation, and said he looked forward to continuing the 
strong relationship his office had with USG interlocutors. 
Leach