Austria arrests for recruiting Syria fighters

Thirteen suspects arrested in raids on homes, prayer rooms and mosques for trying to recruit fighters.

    Austrian police have arrested 13 people suspected of recruiting fighters for Islamic groups in the Middle East.

    The state prosecutor's office said the suspects were arrested early on Friday in a sweep covering homes, prayer rooms, and mosques in Vienna, the southern city of Graz and Upper Austria province.

    The operation reportedly involved 500 police officers, the largest raid in Austria since World War II. 

    The suspects were allegedly trying to recruit young people to fight in Syria. A Bosnian preacher was reportedly the main suspect.

    They said the arrests followed two years of observation of the suspects that included monitoring their telephone calls.

    A statement says searches yielded "terroristic propaganda material," an unspecified amount of cash and stored computer data.

    Dylan Whiting, a Vienna-based journalist, told Al Jazeera that the raids were carried out after authorities discovered "concrete proof" of recruitment.

    The suspects were not identified, in line with Austrian privacy laws.

    Beyond recruiting fighters, local daily news paper Kronen Zeitung said that the suspects were under investigation for helping to finance the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.

    The Interior Ministry says that about 150 people have joined Middle East groups from Austria.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera And Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel

    No country in the world recognises Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

    Strong quotes for Martin Luther King Jr Day

    Quotes from Martin Luther King Jr that resonate today

    Quotes of justice, education, religion and race said by MLK Jr.

    Forced at 15: The young brides of Niger

    Forced at 15: The young brides of Niger

    How young girls in the West African country are fighting back against child marriage.