ISIS-linked terror plot concentrating on Euro 2024 cities foiled at last second

An ISIS-linked propaganda hub which has tried to orchestrate terror attacks on Euro 2024 cities has been dismantled.

Police in Spain have made numerous arrests across the country after uncovering a multi-media service called I’LAM Foundation, reportedly a mouthpiece of Islamic State. The outlet is said to have encouraged attacks on Real Madrid players and fans, the Euros in Germany and the upcoming Paris Olympics.

As part of the investigation, posters encouraging attacks on the tournament were discovered, according to reports in Spain. Posters printed in English were said to have featured a soldier holding a rifle with the words “Where do you want?” and “Score the final goal!” The message suggests three potential targets: Munich, Dortmund and Berlin, which will host the final on July 14.

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The investigation, which also involved Europol (the EU’s law and enforcement agency) and the American FBI, into I’LAM Foundation also discovered a vast array of material disseminating radical content into more the 30 languages. Authorities from the Netherlands, Germany, France, Estonia, Romania and Iceland were also involved as nine people in Girona, Cadiz, Almeria and Tenerife were arrested.

The network reportedly went as far as issuing advice on how to attack the Real Madrid team. One poster, showing a hooded figure opening fire with a rifle and a telescopic sight, read: “My dear Muwahhid brother. Wait at a place near the players’ point of arrival. Target them along with their fans.”

Terrorists had been encouraged to attack Berlin's Olympic Stadium during the Euros
Terrorists had been encouraged to attack Berlin’s Olympic Stadium during the Euros

Another poster, referring to the Bernabeu Stadium itself, ordered: “My dear brother in Al-Andalus. A very valuable target awaits you. Break into the crowds, distract security with improvised explosives and decoy devices, and advance towards your main target with determination.”

The Spanish authorities and the Europol believe the dismantling of I’LAM Foundation has severed links between ISIS and numerous potential terrorists. The arrests come months after a terror warning surrounding the Champions League quarter-finals was issued.

In a statement at the time, UEFA said it was “aware of alleged terrorist threats made towards this week’s UEFA Champions League matches and is closely liaising with the authorities at the respective venues”. The last-eight ties, which included Arsenal and Manchester City, went ahead as planned.