Fears raised of bioattack on World Cup

Reuters reports that a recent arrest in Iraq has rekindled fears of a terrorist attack during the World Cup which begins next month in South Africa.

Officials in the host country say that the terrorist plot was barely hatched before it was uncovered and that the tournament will be safe, according to the report. The officials say that police have been trained and prepared for potential threats including chemical and biological weapon attacks.

An alleged al Qaeda supporter named Abdullah Azzam al-Qahtani was planning an attack on the Danish and Dutch soccer teams, according to Reuters. The report states that the alleged plot was not a serious threat, but authorities in the terrorism prevention field say that the biggest sporting event of the year will be a target no matter where it is held.

"It is the biggest sports event in the world," Anneli Botha, from the Institute of Security Studies in Pretoria, told Reuters. "Although South Africa might think we are beyond the interests of groups like al Qaeda, the event is the target, not the country. What makes South Africa so unique? Yes, we are not involved in Iraq or Afghanistan, but unfortunately the tremendous media coverage you are going to get will definitely attract not only al Qaeda but I think even smaller groups."

Police will pay special attention to games that may pose greater security threats, such as the United States-England match on June 12, Reuters reports.