Plans by Islamic State terror group to attack Europe found by coalition forces

Updated: 

Plans revealing thousands of plots by the Islamic State (IS) terror group to attack Europe have been discovered by coalition forces fighting the militants in Syria and Iraq, Britain's top commander in the region has claimed.

Major General Rupert Jones said more than 10,000 documents and a large trove of digital data was seized after IS, also known as Daesh, were driven out of Manbij, northern Syria, in August.

He said: "If we want to keep Britain safe, we need to deal with Daesh."

Speaking to reporters at the Al-Assad air base in Iraq, he said of the find in Manbij: "I am not going to go into the details but we know that external operations have been getting orchestrated to a very significant degree from within the caliphate, critically from within Raqqa and from within Manbij.

"They were key external operations hubs. There is a huge amount of intelligence, documentation, electronic material that has been exploited there that points very directly against all sorts of nations around the world."

British security agencies are now working to analyse the plots and will be expecting fresh intelligence if the coalition retakes Mosul in Iraq in its current offensive.

"I am absolutely certain that an extraordinary amount of intelligence will come out of (there)," he said.

"It will be a labyrinth of intelligence and we need to get that into the hands of the intelligence agencies."