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Eiffel Tower May Have Been Target of Spain's ISIS Cell

Eiffel Tower May Have Been Target of Spain's ISIS Cell

Thursday, 25 January, 2018 - 10:45
A French soldier patrols near the Eiffel Tower on January 10, 2015. ERIC GAILLARD/REUTERS

The French capital’s Eiffel Tower may have been among the targets of the ISIS cell that carried out a deadly terrorist attack in Barcelona in the summer, a new report said.

The protective wall that surrounds the monument was installed after video of a trip to Paris was found in a destroyed hideout, according to the report by researchers Fernando Reinares and Carola Garcia-Calvo in January's CTC Sentinel, a research publication into terrorism.

The cell attacked Barcelona's La Rambla and Cambrils, a beachside town, killing 16 people in August at the height of the season and in one of Europe's top tourist destinations.

Only flawed bomb construction prevented a deadlier attack. Their hideout blew up as they were assembling explosives.

According to the report, based on interviews with investigators and court documents, members of the cell traveled to Paris before the attack, for reasons investigators have yet to determine. There, they bought a camera and filmed the Eiffel Tower.

French authorities began installing in September a bulletproof glass wall around the Eiffel Tower’s gardens under the 30-million-euro ($36-million), nine-month works.

Visited by six to seven million people each year, the landmark already has a permanent police patrol.

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