MI5 head: Islamic State planning 'devastating' attacks in Europe


"Our respect for Russia's people (.) can not and must not stop us from calling out and pushing back on the Kremlin's flagrant breaches of worldwide rules", the head of Britain's MI5 spy agency, Andrew Parker, told an intelligence gathering in Berlin.

"We have no desire to escalate tensions or go back to the tense and unsafe times that Europe lived through during the cold war".

Britain suffered four deadly militant attacks past year - a suicide bombing at a Manchester pop concert and an attack on London Bridge.

The Director-General will today confirm the United Kingdom security agencies have disrupted a total of 25 mostly Islamist terror plots since 2013, including 12 in the last 14 months.

The continuation of intelligence sharing after the UK's withdrawal from the European Union amid alleged "aggressive actions" from Russian Federation will be a bottom line of MI5 Director General Andrew Parker's speech in Berlin, according to The Daily Express.

Parker accused the Kremlin of "flagrant breaches of worldwide rules" and said the attack on the Skripals was an example of Russia's malign activities that risked turning the country into an "isolated pariah".

Russian-state media outlets and representatives promoted at least 30 "explanations" for the Salisbury nerve agent attack as part of a campaign to shift blame for the attempted assassination, the head of MI5 has said. Mr Skripal remains in hospital, while his daughter Yulia, who was also taken ill, was released to a secure location last month.

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Parker listed Russia's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, Russian meddling in the USA and French presidential elections, a coup attempt in Montenegro and cyber attacks against the West as examples of what he called the Kremlin's unacceptable behaviour.

London has blamed Moscow for the poisoning of Skripal, a former Russian military intelligence operative who became an informant for Britain's MI6 foreign spy service, in the first use of a nerve agent in Europe since World War II.

Mr Parker did not single out specific sources but the Russian embassy in the United Kingdom has repeatedly issued statements and tweets disputing Britain's allegations about the attack.

The chief of MI5, the UK's security service, has accused Russian Federation of attempting to subvert Western democracies.

Hans-Georg Maassen, head of Germany's BfV domestic intelligence agency, said Moscow was behind a series of cyber attacks carried out by a Russian hacking group called APT28.

"Bare-faced lying seems to be the default mode, coupled with ridicule of critics".

"The Russian state's now well-practised doctrine of blending media manipulation, social media disinformation and distortion along with new and old forms of espionage, and high-levels of cyber attacks, military force and criminal thuggery is what is meant these days by the term hybrid threats".