01/20/2016
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  שבט 10, 5776 , 20/01/16

Kosovo jails two for fighting in Syria

A Pristina court said Wednesday it had jailed two ethnic Albanians for three-and-a-half years for taking part in fighting in Syria.

The two, arrested in February and identified by the court only by initials AL and NB, were convicted of "participating in a terrorist organization" in Syria, the court said in a statement sent to AFP.
According to the charges, the two -- who each pleaded guilty -- went to Syria in 2013, traveling through Turkey and fought with the Al-Nusra Front, Al-Qaeda's Syria affiliate.
They told the court that they had left Al Nusra and returned to Kosovo after ISIS tried to take command of their group.
Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority population of 1.8 million is predominantly Muslim.
About 300 Kosovars have joined the jihadists' frontlines in Iraq and Syria since 2011, according to police figures.
Fifty have been killed in fighting while around 120 have returned to Kosovo.
Some 90 people have been arrested in Kosovo since September 2014 on charges including fighting in Syria and Iraq on the side of terrorist groups.
Confronting the threat posed by radical islamists returning from Syria and Iraq, Kosovo adopted a law in 2015 allowing prison sentences to be imposed for fighting abroad.

Other archived news briefs:Jan 20 2016, 08:15 PM, 1/20/2016