|(QMI AGENCY PHOTO)
Terrorists have spared Canada from a major attack because they see the country as a place to raise money and as a safe haven for their families, says a topIsraeli anti-terror cop.
“Terror groups don’t want to cause a problem here,” Yoav Lorbert, the security manager of El Al Israel Airlines. “These groups attack for a reason and Canada is not an attractive target.”
Lorbert said cell members send their families to live or attend school in Canada and don’t want to cause problems.
“Canada is not involved in any (volatile) political situations abroad,” he said at an International Airport Investigators’ Training Symposium which wrapped up in Toronto last week.
He showed dramatic El Al security video of suicide bombers and how they can be detected. There was stunning footage of a man blowing himself up with such a blast that it shook buildings.
Investigators said many fugitives and terrorists “park” their families in Canada for safe keeping.
They highlighted the case of Khadiga Gurhan, aka “Madam Aidid”, the second wife of Somali warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid. The woman had been living and collecting welfare in London, Ont., in the early 1990s with four children, as her husband was on the run from UN forces in Somalia. He was killed in 1996.
Lorbert was head of El Al security when the airline was targeted several times, including a 2002 ticket counter attack at Los Angeles Airport which left two people dead and three others wounded. Airline personnel killed the gunman.
He was present during a 1985 attack in Rome when terrorists threw grenades and opened fire at an El Al counter killing 17 people an wounding more than 100.
Lorbert said all ground workers entering El Al aircraft must show identification and are accompanied by security officials.
Investigators were also updated on a police probe at Pearson Airport on
the theft of items from skids of name-brand goods being imported by
“Sometimes the entire middle section from a skid of goods can be missing,” said Det. Stephen Rowland, of Peel Regional Police Airport Division. “In general, stolen goods are smuggled out of the airport by workers.”
Toronto Police Supt. Ron Taverner said his 23 Division handles calls for help at Pearson and a federal immigration detention centre, on Rexdale Blvd.
“We are the closest division in proximity to the airport,” Taverner said.
“There are a lot of cases that involve Toronto.”