Germany: 3 extremists detained over suspected attack plot

German special police members walk during a raid on a piece of property in Berlin, Germany, September 22, 2015. (Photo by Reuters)
Updated 12 November 2019

Germany: 3 extremists detained over suspected attack plot

BERLIN: Authorities in Germany detained three alleged supporters of the Daesh group Tuesday on suspicion of preparing a deadly attack against non-Muslims.
Frankfurt prosecutors said some 170 police officers searched three apartments in the nearby city of Offenbach and detained the men, who were already known to authorities.
“The intervention occurred in time to prevent a concrete threat,” chief prosecutor Nadja Niesen told reporters in Frankfurt. She said that the suspects appeared to have planned an attack in the Rhine-Main region with the intention of killing “as many people, so-called unbelievers, as possible,” but it wasn’t yet known whether they had chosen a specific target.
Niesen said the main suspect, a 24-year-old German citizen with Macedonian roots, had already acquired materials needed to make explosives and searched for firearms online. Police seized various substances and electronic devices at the man’s apartment.
The other two suspects are Turkish citizens aged 21 and 22.
All three suspects are alleged to have spoken of their support for the Daesh group in the presence of witnesses, who informed authorities, Niesen said.


Pope backs Iraqi call for its sovereignty to be respected

Updated 44 min 31 sec ago

Pope backs Iraqi call for its sovereignty to be respected

  • President Barham Salih held private talks for about 30 minutes with the pope and then met the Vatican’s two top diplomats
  • The recent tensions in Iraq could make it impossible for Francis to visit the country, which he has said he would like to do this year

VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis met Iraq’s president on Saturday and the two agreed that the country’s sovereignty must be respected, following attacks on Iraqi territory this month by the United States and Iran.
President Barham Salih held private talks for about 30 minutes with the pope and then met the Vatican’s two top diplomats, Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin and Archbishop Paul Gallagher, its foreign minister.
The talks “focused on the challenges the country currently faces and on the importance of promoting stability and the reconstruction process, encouraging the path of dialogue and the search for suitable solutions in favor of citizens and with respect for national sovereignty,” a Vatican statement said.
On Jan. 8, Iranian forces fired missiles at two military bases in Iraq housing US troops in retaliation for Washington’s killing of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in a drone strike a Baghdad airport on Jan. 3.
The Iraqi parliament has passed a resolution ordering the 5,000 US troops stationed in Iraq to leave the country.
Soon after the Iranian attack, Francis urged the United States and Iran to avoid escalation and pursue “dialogue and self-restraint” to avert a wider conflict in the Middle East.
The pope discussed the Middle East with US Vice President Mike Pence on Friday.
The recent tensions in Iraq could make it impossible for Francis to visit the country, which he has said he would like to do this year.
The Vatican said the pope and Salih also discussed “the importance of preserving the historical presence of Christians in the country.”
The Christian presence in Iraq and some other countries in the Middle East has been depleted by wars and conflicts.
Iraq’s several hundred thousand Christians suffered particular hardships when Daesh controlled large parts of the country, but have recovered.