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Islamic extremists 'planned an attack on the Vatican'

Islamic extremists planned an attack against the Vatican in 2010, Italian prosecutors said.

Wire taps indicated that a suicide bomber had arrived in Rome, prosecutor Mauro Mura told a Press conference in Cagliari, Sardinia.

Mr Mura said the plans never went further and the bomber left Italy, though it was not clear why. He said the wire taps gave "signals of some preparation for a possible attack".

Italian police said they were arresting 18 suspected extremists, including two purported bodyguards for Osama bin Laden, who allegedly staged attacks in Pakistan and sought to topple the Pakistani government.

While relations with the Muslim world were eventually repaired, tensions flared again in 2011 when Cairo's al-Azhar institute, the pre-eminent theological school of Sunni Islam, suspended interfaith talks with the Vatican after Benedict called for greater protections for Egypt's minority Christians.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph