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Published on Friday, January 29, 2016

Med cruises at risk of terror hit, warns NATO naval chief

A senior NATO naval officer has warned that Islamic State militants would like to build a maritime arm, which could pose a threat to cruise ships in the Mediterranean.

Royal Navy officer, vice admiral Clive Johnstone CB CBE, said although he didn't think militant groups were targeting shipping, there was a 'horrible opportunity' a cruise liner or container ship could be hit.

Speaking to the Telegraph, he said: "We know they have had ambitions to go off shore, we know they would like to have a maritime arm, just as al Qaeda had a maritime arm."

He said the threat has been made stronger by the spread of sophisticated Russian and Chinese weapons to armed groups in the region.

With the Mediterranean becoming increasingly militarised, due to the increased threat, cruise ships are coming under threat from a misfire.

"I think it won't be a planned, horrible mischievous act, I think it will be an act which is almost a mistake, or it will be an act of random terrorism that will suddenly have extraordinary implications for the Western world," he told the Telegraph.

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