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Plot to kill Barack Obama foiled, two arrested

world Updated: Oct 28, 2008 15:39 IST

US authorities have foiled a plot to assassinate White House frontrunner Barack Obama, arresting two white supremacists planning a "killing spree" targeting over 100 Afro-Americans, including the Democrat who aspires to be the country's first black President.

Two suspected skinheads have been charged on Friday in US District Court in Memphis, Tennessee, with illegal possession of a shotgun and making threats against a major candidate for the office of president, court documents showed.

Daniel Cowart, 20, of Tennessee and Paul Schlesselman, 18, of Arkansas "stated they would dress in all-white tuxedos" during the assassination attempt and noted they "knew they would and were willing to die" in the attempt to kill Obama, a court affidavit by a special agent of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives said.

The complaint said they discussed going on a "killing spree" after robbing a gun shop to gather weapons and ammunition. The duo intended to attack a predominantly African-American school where they kill 88 blacks and behead another 14.

Cowart and Schlesselman, who met last month over the Internet and claimed to have "very strong beliefs regarding 'white power'", said their "final act" would be to kill Obama, officials were quoted in US media reports as saying.

Earlier, before the August National Convention of the Democrats, law enforcement authorities had arrested three men for a planned assassination of Obama but their plan was described as "more aspirational than operational".