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Two Arrested In Canada Terror Plot


Police in Canada say two men have been arrested and charged with plotting a terrorist attack against a Canadian passenger train.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police official James Malizia released details in Toronto.

"On April 22nd, after an extensive and complex criminal investigation named Project Smooth, the RCMP arrested and charged two individuals for terrorism related offenses under various sections of the criminal code. The RCMP is alleging that Chiheb Esseghaier and Raed Jaser were conspiring to carry out and al Qaeda-supported attack against a VIA passenger train."

Canadians officials would only say the two are not Canadian nationals.

Malizia said the two "were receiving support from Al-Qaeda elements located in Iran."

Analysts say Tehran is generally hostile to Sunni Al-Qaeda elements, and periodically launches crackdowns on them, while turning a blind eye at other times.

Malizia said the public was never in danger.

" I want to reassure our citizens that while the RCMP believed the accused had the capacity and intent to carry out these criminal acts, there was no imminent threat to the general public, rail employees train passengers or infrastructure."

U.S. officials said the planned attack would have targeted a rail line between New York and Toronto. Canadian police only said the plot involved a VIA train route in the Toronto region. VIA is Canada's national passenger train service.

An unnamed U.S. Justice Department official told the AP news agency there was no link between the Canadian terrorist plot and the Boston Marathon bombings.

The investigation was part of a cross-border operation involving Canadian law enforcement agencies, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

A bail hearing is scheduled to take place in Toronto later this morning local time.

Based on AP and Reuters reporting
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