Report: Officials fear al-Qaida planning to attack Germany

German officials fear that al-Qaida may be planning to stage attacks in their country, which so far has escaped a major attack by Islamic extremists, according to a report published Friday. The daily Die Welt said German intelligence services believe al-Qaida has largely recovered its operational capability in the Afghan-Pakistani border region. "The basic decision has been made there to stage attacks in Germany," it quoted Bernhard Falk, the vice president of the Federal Criminal Police Office, as saying. Last September, three people were arrested in the central Sauerland region on suspicion that they were planning attacks on US and other facilities in Germany. Officials have alleged that they formed a cell of the Islamic Jihad Union, a group with ties to al-Qaida.