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Two are arrested in Canada terror plot

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Assistant Commissioner James Malizia spoke during a news conference in Toronto. Canadian police said on Monday they had arrested and charged two men with in a plot to derail a passenger train.

Aaron Harris/REUTERS

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Assistant Commissioner James Malizia spoke during a news conference in Toronto. Canadian police said on Monday they had arrested and charged two men with in a plot to derail a passenger train.

TORONTO (AP) — Two men were arrested and charged with plotting a terrorist attack against a Canadian passenger train with support from al-Qaida, police said Monday.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said Monday that Chiheb Esseghaier and Raed Jaser, who live in Montreal and Toronto areas, were conspiring to carry out an attack against Via Rail, but posed no immediate threat.

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‘‘It was definitely in the planning stage but not imminent,’’ RCMP chief superintendent Jennifer Strachan told reporters.

Charges against the two men include conspiring to carry out an attack and murder people in association with a terrorist group. Police said the men are not Canadian citizens, but declined to say where they were from. Police said the men had ‘‘direction and guidance’’ from members of al-Qaida.

The investigation was part of a cross-border operation involving Canadian law enforcement agencies, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

There is no connection between the Canadian terrorist plot and the Boston Marathon bombings, said a U.S. Justice Department official in Washington, speaking on condition of anonymity because the source was not permitted to speak on the record about the matter.

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Associated Press writer Pete Yost in Washington contributed to this story.

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