‘We are in the sights of ISIS’: German spy chief issues chilling warning after football match is abandoned but says country should look to Britain as an example and not be cowed into cancelling events

Wednesday, November 18, 2015
By Paul Martin

German football team was due to take on Holland in Hanover last night
Head of Germany’s internal intelligence service advised match should be cancelled after ‘concrete leads’
But Dr Hans-Georg Maassen warned against cancelling big events in future
He says Germany should look to Britain and the U.S. for example

18 November 2015

Germany’s spy chief today issued a chilling warning after a major football match was cancelled last night over a terror threat.

Dr Hans-Georg Maassen, president of the domestic intelligence services agency BfV, said ‘Germany, like all Western states, is an enemy of Islamic State (IS).’

He added: ‘If IS can hit us, if IS can carry out terror attacks in Germany, it will do so – that is our big concern.’

However, Dr Maassen, who advised ministers to cancel last night’s Germany-Holland match, said the country should not give in to terrorism by resolving to cancel big public events generally.

Speaking during an interview with German broadcaster ARD, he said he would not recommend to cancel big public events in future ‘at all’ and added: ‘We have to be aware that other countries have had problems with terrorist threats for many many years.

‘We should look to those nations to see how they’ve tackle these issues and how they’ve overcome them – think of Israel, as well as Spain, Great Britain and the U.S. – they’ve had problems like this for many years and can hold football games and music events nevertheless.’

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