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Al-Qaida suspects seized with explosives

The Local · 29 Apr 2011, 16:54

Published: 29 Apr 2011 16:54 GMT+02:00

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The prosecutor's office in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe said the trio had been taken into custody early Friday and would appear before a judge Saturday, when a news conference has been scheduled.

It declined to provide further details.

The daily Bild reported that the three were Moroccans living in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia and were caught with "large amounts of explosives".

Citing security sources, the newspaper said they were suspected of plotting attacks in Germany. One possibility was that they were targeting the Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf on May 14, the paper reported.

They came to the attention of the Federal Crime Office during surveillance of mobile phone and computer communications.

Bild identified them as Abdeladim K., Jamil S. and Ahmed Sh.

The Moroccan government said Friday that al-Qaida was suspected in connection with a bomb attack Thursday that killed 16 in Marrakesh.

German authorities hiked security measures in November after US authorities warned of an al-Qaida plot to carry out "Mumbai-style" attacks in Britain, France and Germany.

US authorities handed over to Germany last week the source of the tip, alleged Islamic militant Ahmed Wali Siddiqui, who had been held for nine months in Afghanistan.

According to German media, Siddiqui met with al-Qaida's third in command, Sheikh Yunis al-Mauretani, who initiated him into a plot to carry out attacks in Europe similar to those in the Indian city of Mumbai in 2008 in which 10 gunmen killed 166 people and injured more than 300.

The interior ministry announced in February that the state of alert would gradually be scaled back.

Germany, which opposed the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq but has nearly 5,000 troops in Afghanistan under NATO command, has never experienced an attack by Muslim extremists on its own soil.

But authorities say the Islamist scene is large and dangerous.

Story continues below…

The closest it has come to an attack was in July 2006 when Islamic militants placed suitcases with homemade bombs on two regional trains at Cologne's main station. They failed to detonate, averting an almost certain bloodbath.

And in 2007, three men including two German converts to Islam were caught plotting attacks on US interests in western Germany in what authorities said was a bid to mount a "second September 11."

They were sentenced last year to lengthy prison terms.

AFP/The Local/djw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

18:29 April 29, 2011 by Freeman
Whoa, is anywhere really "safe"?
20:03 April 29, 2011 by tallady
It has become a divided world, our way of life is under constant pressure from this element anyone thinking other wise is in denial.
20:38 April 29, 2011 by iseedaftpeople
"One possibility was that they were targeting the Eurovision Song Contest in Düsseldorf on May 14"

well now, that's taking it a little too far. Everybody hates the Eurovision Song Contest, but I would never go to such extreme measures...
22:47 April 29, 2011 by whpmgr
tallady, is that a racist comment?

I agree though, so I must be one too. HTey are coming at us hard and there is no way to stop it except to segregate and that will be untolerable to most of the world's citizens (especially the bad guys).
22:50 April 29, 2011 by euskept
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
00:02 April 30, 2011 by WTM
Lengthy prison terms??? What? Like the ones they give pedophiles and murders??! I think it's time Germany cleaned out the scum.. Local AND foreign alike..Harder sentencing is mandatory (once proved guilty of course.
15:51 April 30, 2011 by Al uk
The joys and gifts of multiculturalism.
07:48 May 2, 2011 by wenddiver
There are a lot of breeds of dog, but none is more loyal, more adaptable, more stick with it than the Mutt.

Your American cousins popped a cap in Osama Bin Laddens a$$! He is as dead as Sadam Huesein, a can of Sauer Kraut or a bag of bricks. The GIs of our Special Ops Units got him! Killed his worthless soon too!

Mark one up for Western Culture, the King caveman is gone. I have to go finish playing fetch the Koran with the dog and finish the street party.
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