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Islamic State 'is plotting chemical attack in Britain,' security chiefs warn

Mirror logo Mirror 9/12/2018 Danya Bazaraa
a person wearing a costume: Security chiefs reportedly believe a chemical weapons attack is more likely than not (file photo) © AFP/Getty Images Security chiefs reportedly believe a chemical weapons attack is more likely than not (file photo)

Security chiefs have warned a 'devastating' chemical weapons attack in Britain could be more likely than not, according to a report.

The warning reportedly comes after 'chatter' between senior Islamic State figures was intercepted.

And there are fears the London Underground could be the target of the detonation of a chlorine bomb, it is reported.

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ISIS is believed to have been inspired by the Novichok poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury back in March.

Prior to this, the Government’s Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre (JTAC) reportedly assessed the risk of a chemical weapons attack at 25 percent.

But now, sources have told the Mail on Sunday the risk is more than 50 percent.

a group of people standing in a train station © Credits: Bloomberg via Getty Images

Responding to the report, Security Minister Ben Wallace told the Mail on Sunday: "I have consistently warned that a chemical attack in the UK is getting more likely.

"We have well-tested plans to respond to an attack and minimise the impact, should an incident occur."

Terror chiefs are believed to have met with emergency services in the last few weeks to plan what their response to such an attack would be.

a man sitting at a table with wine glasses © Provided by Trinity Mirror Shared Services Limited

Teams were presented with possible scenarios and locations for attacks by bombs hidden in rucksacks, according to reports.

The simulation involved commuters being 'killed' by chlorine gas at popular underground stations.

It is thought to have demonstrated that 100 people could die in such an attack and many more injured.

a man in a suit standing in front of a building © Credits: PA

A security source who was part of the exercise said it was important to educate people about the threat of these weapons to minimise panic.

They said the chlorine vapour would last a number of minutes and then evaporate, and would be localised.

"While fatal, the stampede to get out of the Tube station would cost far more lives than the chemical," the source added.

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