NYPD Police Commissioner Ray Kelly has said that New York City continues to be a target for terrorists in the wake of the attempted attack of the Federal Reserve Bank in Lower Manhattan.
Kelly gave credit to FBI and other law enforcement agencies for thwarting the bomb threat, but reminded people the threat of terrorism isn’t going away anytime soon.
“I think this means that New York continues to be very much in the mind frame… of terrorists,” Kelly said. “This individual came here with the express purpose of committing a terrorist act. He was motivated by al-Qaida. So we see this threat as being with us for a long time.”
On Wednesday morning, 21-year-old Quazi Mohammad Rezwanul Ahsan Nafis was arrested by federal authorities following a sting operation.
The Bangladesh native was in the process of trying to detonate what he thought was a 1,000-pound bomb in front of the Federal Reserve Bank on Liberty Street.
"Unbeknownst to Nafis, one of the individuals he attempted to recruit was actually a source for the FBI," court documents stated.
“Clearly, if you read the complaint, what this shows is this individual came here for the purpose of doing a terrorist act,” Kelly said. “He came here in January of this year. He gets a student visa under the pretext of being a student in a college in Missouri, and he comes here again with the avowed purpose of committing some sort of jihad here in the United States. He goes to the New York Stock Exchange, he sees the significant security there, and he shifts his target to the Federal Reserve Bank.”
In the wake of the attack, Kelly said the Federal Reserve will be watched more closely as a target.
“It makes the Federal Reserve Bank – it gives it a position, I should say – on our list of iconic targets here in New York City,” Kelly said.