Germany arrests three ISIS suspects

German police arrest three Algerians suspected of links to the ISIS on suspicion of planning a terrorist attack.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,


German police on Thursday arrested three Algerians suspected of links to the Islamic State (ISIS) group after raids targeting several sites, including refugee shelters where some of the suspects lived, reported AFP.

In all, four Algerians "from the jihadist scene are under investigation over suspicions that they are planning a serious act threatening the security of the state", Berlin police said, according to the news agency.

The group was suspected of planning a possible strike against the German capital, a spokesman for Berlin prosecutors told AFP.

The alleged involvement of Algerians in an ISIS plot and the link to refugee shelters is expected to add fuel to a raging debate over the 1.1 million asylum seekers that Germany took in last year.

North African migrants have already been in the spotlight after they were blamed for a rash of sexual assaults during New Year Eve's festivities in the western German city of Cologne.

As well, one of the terrorists from last November’s ISIS attack in Paris snuck into Europe with a group of Syrian refugees.

But the latest arrests risk compounding fears that jihadists are taking advantage of the massive influx of asylum seekers to slip into Europe undetected, noted AFP.

One of the two men captured is wanted by Algerian authorities for his alleged links to ISIS, police said, adding that "investigations show that he has been trained militarily in Syria."

The suspect and his wife, who was also detained and sought by Algiers over alleged connections with ISIS, lived in a refugee shelter in Attendorn, about 80 kilometers (50 miles) from Cologne.

The second Algerian man was arrested on suspicion of falsifying identity documents, according to AFP.

National news agency DPA said one of the Algerians had contact with Belgium's Islamist movement and had travelled at least once in recent weeks to Molenbeek, the troubled Brussels neighborhood which has emerged as a hotbed of extremism and from which the Paris terrorists came.

The two suspects targeted in Berlin were however not asylum seekers, had jobs and had been living in the capital for a while, police said.

No weapons were found in the operation but the Bild daily newspaper said that investigators were searching for explosives.

In December, two former ISIS jihadists, including a would-be suicide bomber, were sentenced to jail by a German court on charges of involvement in a terrorist group.

The two were "involved in the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria organization between June and August 2014, and were therefore members of a terrorist group abroad," the court in western Germany's Lower Saxony said in its ruling.

Germany has announced a ban on ISIS in an attempt to prevent the group from recruiting young jihadists in the country.