FBI mulls anti-terrorism intelligence alliance with Europe

Daily Times

march 20, 2004

WASHINGTON: The FBI is considering an international anti-terrorism alliance, patterned after NATO, that would enhance US-European intelligence sharing, FBI Director Robert Mueller said on Wednesday.

“We have had, upon occasion, agents from other countries full-time in the FBI building, but there are issues related to security and clearances ... that a NATO-like joint intelligence center might solve,” the Federal Bureau of Investigation director told members of a House of Representatives committee.

“We are in the process of going through the NATO structure to see whether NATO structure itself will undertake the hosting of such an organization,” Mueller said. “The NATO concept, where there is a classification procedure and a background procedure, where you already have established that level of security ... may be the mechanism for sharing intelligence information that is meaningful,” the FBI director added in testimony to the Appropriations subcommittee on Commerce Justice and State affairs.

Mueller said his European counterparts have expressed some interest in the plan, but have suggested they prefer, for the moment, to handle security matters through the European security agency Europol. —AFP