Alleged terrorists planned attack on passenger train

April 22, 2013 at 3:51 PM

TORONTO, April 22 (UPI) -- Canadian police and intelligence services said Monday they foiled a planned attack on a passenger train, arresting two alleged terrorists.

The arrests were made in Montreal and Toronto. Chiheb Esseghaier and Raed Jaser were charged with conspiring to carry out an attack against and conspiring to murder persons unknown for the benefit of, at the direction of or in association with a terrorist group.

The more than yearlong investigation -- dubbed Project Smooth -- was conducted by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in collaboration with the FBI and various other agencies.

"Each and every terrorist arrest the RCMP makes sends a message and illustrates our strong resolve to root out terrorist threats and keep Canadians and our allies safe," stated Assistant Commissioner James Malizia, responsible for Federal Policing Operations, said in a statement. "A meaningful response to these threats begins on Canadian streets and in Canadians homes and the RCMP works with all their partners, including communities across Canada, in the fight against terrorism."

Two suspects were to make a court appearance Tuesday, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. said.

CTV reported the alleged plot involved derailing a New York-to-Toronto passenger train on the Canadian side of the U.S. border and the suspects are linked to al-Qaida.

Both CTV and CBC quoted sources as saying the suspects weren't related to two men from London, Ontario, who died during the al-Qaida-linked attack on an Algerian gas plant in January or to last week's Boston Marathon bombing.

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