Inerpol chief warns of virus attacks

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POLICE across the world say there is no doubt that terrorists are planning to release a plague virus at a major sports event.

Experts are convinced that the bacteria will be distributed using something as simple as a child's plastic horn. With the Beijing Olympics just months away and the World Cup to be held in South Africa in 2010, there are plenty of opportunities for an attack. Although it is more than six years before Scotland hosts the Commonwealth Games, its organisers say they are not taking anything for granted. A conference, codenamed 'Black Death' and organised by Interpol, was held last week in Lyon, France. Ronald Noble, Interpol's general secretary, told delegates about the threat posed by bio–terrorists. He said: " We will deal with a worst–case scenario of global proportion – terrorists that produce large amounts of a deadly bacteria, [or] plague – and disseminate it using hundreds of simple horns, the kind which children use at sporting events. In their wake are mass casualties and even greater disruption to society. " Security sources say the idea of terrorists using toy horns to distribute a deadly virus is a significant possibility. One source said: " This has come from information received from the authorities in Indonesia, where references to such a form of attack were discovered. " He said it was simple and " very straightforward but potentially, absolutely deadly" . Noble said the threat needed to be addressed by everyone in order to prevent the terrorists from succeeding. He said this type of attack " does not rely on advanced scientific expertise, large amounts of money or elaborate laboratories. This is the truly frightening form aspect of bio–terrorism. It is the perfect storm of opportunity and motivation" . The subject of targeting major sporting events was also identified recently by experts at Indiana University. The authors of a report called 'Bio–terrorism and me' wrote: " Biological and chemical toxins can be released in several different ways. " For practical purposes, certain delivery methods are more likely to be used than others. If the goal is to launch an unforeseen attack on the population of a certain region causing the highest possible number of deaths, an aerosol delivery of the agent is the most likely choice. " A spokesman for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games said: " Security is our number one priority and we will be liaising extremely closely with experts constantly throughout the build–up to the games. " With a track record of regularly hosting major sporting, cultural and political events, the police and security services in this country have the knowledge and capacity to make sure that security is something that will not impinge on the Games' experience of competitors, spectators or the media. ","65

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