Britain's counterterrorism chief has warned that the Islamic State (IS) militant group wants to launch "enormous and spectacular attacks" targeting Western lifestyles, not just military targets.
Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley told reporters in London on March 7 that while IS once struck primarily at symbols of the state, such the military and police, the group is now planning broader attacks like last November's string of attacks in Paris on a concert hall, stadium, and bars, which killed 130 people.
"You see a terrorist group which has big ambitions for enormous and spectacular attacks, not just the types that we've seen foiled to date," he said.
Rowley stressed that police have no information about such an attack at present, but said authorities should plan for all possibilities.
Rowley said IS is no longer content to simply radicalize so-called "lone wolf" attackers through propaganda on the Internet, but is "trying to build bigger attacks."
He added that the group is also trying to bring extremists trained in Syria into northern Europe to launch strikes.