Four right-wing terrorists held in South Africa

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Updated 18 December 2012
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Four right-wing terrorists held in South Africa

BLOEMFONTEIN/JOHANNESBURG: South African police have arrested four right-wing extremists, suspected of having weapons and planning attacks on undisclosed targets, a spokesman said yesterday.
After a nearly two-year investigation, police arrested four men, "believed to be right-wing extremists, suspected of acts of terrorism," according to police spokesman Brig. Billy Jones.
During a raid, police said they uncovered evidence supporting the investigation on their premises.
Jones told AFP the plot was not linked with the ruling ANC's political conference under way in the city of Bloemfontein.
"Four people were arrested... not linked to the conference at all. . . . Those people were arrested in different places in the country," he said.
Local media claimed that the plot was targeting the African National Congress's five-yearly leadership conference in Bloemfontein.
Security has been extremely tight around the conference, with razor wire thrown up around a perimeter guarded by armed police.
The Free State province is historically a hotbed of Afrikaner nationalism.
Since the fall of the white-minority apartheid government in 1994 numerous right-wing groups have turned to violence.
The African National Congress, the nation's governing party, has begun accepting nominations for its top officials.
At their meeting yesterday, officials announced that there would be only two candidates contesting to be the party's president: Current President Jacob Zuma and Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe.
The 70-year-old Zuma is perceived to be the favorite to win over his deputy, despite being trailed by corruption allegations.
Some 4,000 delegates will vote for the ANC's leadership. Whoever the party picks will likely be the next president of this nation of 50 million people, as opposition parties don't have the same support in South Africa.
Meanwhile, former South African president Nelson Mandela remained in hospital for a 10th straight day yesterday after receiving treatment for a lung infection and gallstone surgery, the president's office said.
The 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon and Nobel Peace Laureate was flown from his rural home in Qunu in the south of the country to the capital Pretoria on Dec. 8 for treatment.
Mandela missed the return of his grandson from an initiation ceremony.
Bambatha Mandela had been in the bush for days for the ukwaluka ceremony of Mandela's Xhosa people, learning about the culture and ultimately undergoing a circumcision carried out by a traditional surgeon. Eastern Cape.


Suspected Brussels Jewish museum killer to stand trial: lawyer

Updated 19 min 29 sec ago
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Suspected Brussels Jewish museum killer to stand trial: lawyer

  • Mehdi Nemmouche is accused of killing four people on May 24, 2014
  • Nemmouche was arrested in the southern French port city of Marseille when getting off a bus from Brussels

BRUSSELS: Frenchman Mehdi Nemmouche was ordered Thursday to stand trial in Brussels for allegedly killing four people at the Jewish museum four years ago in a jihadist attack, his lawyer said.
Judges decided there was enough evidence to try Nemmouche and alleged accomplice Nacer Bendrer, who is also French, in a Brussels court for the attack in 2014, lawyer Henri Laquay told AFP.
He did not name a date but the trial is expected to begin later this year or early next year.
But the judges decided there was not enough evidence to put Mounir Attalah, a third Frenchman linked to the attack, on trial.
On May 24, 2014 a gunman armed with an assault rifle opened fire in the entrance hall of the museum in the center of the Belgian capital, killing two Israeli tourists, a French volunteer and a Belgian museum receptionist.
Six days later Nemmouche was arrested in the southern French port city of Marseille when getting off a bus from Brussels.
Nemmouche had returned from Syria where he had been fighting with Islamist extremists.