Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Mysterious tunnel under Toronto stadium raises fears of terrorist attack: Report

A sophisticated tunnel has been discovered hidden near a major sporting venue and a university in Toronto and, with Canada already on edge over the threat of possible terrorist attacks, authorities are aren't counting out an extremist affiliation. 

The unusual tunnel was discovered by a municipal worker was walking through woods near York University and the Rexall Centre last month when he spotted a piece of corrugated metal on the ground, lifted it up and found a passageway, reported the CBC.

And questions still abound about who could have dug it out?

The tunnel was about 23-feet long and 6-feet tall and was lit by an electric generator. The walls and ceilings had been reinforced and tools had been left inside.

Authorities have now filled it in but police were tight-lipped about what its purpose might have been. But CBC said authorities had ruled out the possibility of the suspicious dig being a drug lab.

The 12,500 seat stadium plays host to a number of music and tennis events and has a park-like setting surrounding the venue. The arena was to be used for the Pan Am Games this summer. Authorities do not believe this posed a threat to the future sporting event.

Canadian authorities are on alert following two Islamist-influenced attacks last year that resulted in the deaths of two unarmed soldiers in Ottawa and Montreal. And a recent video by the Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab insurgent group has also raised tensions. In it a masked man threatened Canada's massive West Edmonton Mall, along with a mall in the United States and a major shopping district in Britain.

Officials are also aware that some Canadian Islamists have travelled to Syria to join Isis. 

Shebab carried out a bloody attack and takeover of a mall in Nairobi in September 2013 that killed at least 67 people.

The Mall of America, located in Minnesota and reputedly the country's largest with 40 million visitors a year, said it had taken extra security measures in response to the threat by the Shebab.

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