Mosques and flats are stormed by 800 Austrian police in huge anti-terror raids to break network of preacher who brainwashed teenagers to fight for ISIS


 

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  • Several people have been arrested after the huge anti-terror raids in Austria
  • Hundreds of police entered apartments and unofficial mosques in the two cities
  • Raids targeted former Yugoslavians suspected of establishing jihadist network

Mosques and flats have been stormed by 800 Austrian police in a bid to break the network of a preacher suspected of brainwashing teenagers to fight for ISIS.

Authorities say 11 people have been arrested after the huge anti-terror raids which took place across Graz and in the capital Vienna.

Officers entered apartments and unofficial mosques in the two cities as part of the crackdown, which targeted people from the former Yugoslavia suspected of establishing a jihadist network in Austria, according to Austrian media.

The raids were reportedly not connected to last week’s arrest of a suspected 17-year-old Islamist extremist in Vienna.

Instead, police said the raids allegedly focused on the network of a Muslim preacher from Bosnia who was jailed for 20 years last July in Graz for recruiting young fighters to ISIS.

The accused, known as Ebu Tejma, is thought to have ‘brainwashed’ dozens of people aged between 14 and 30 and enlisted a number of them to fight for ISIS in Syria.

Tejma fled from Bosnia to Vienna following the break-up of Yugoslavia and preached in various Austrian and southern German cities, becoming a ‘key figure’ in pushing IS propaganda, according to the prosecution.

He was arrested during a far-reaching crackdown on Austrian jihadist networks in 2014 and has denied the charges against him.

Eight men were initially detained, including three Austrians ‘with a migration background’, two Bosnians, a Syrian, a Bulgarian and a Macedonian, all aged between 21 and 49, a spokesman said.

Four of the arrests were in Vienna and four in Graz. A further three suspects from the Balkans were later also arrested in Graz.

Austria has so far been spared by the string of attacks by Islamist extremists in other European countries in recent years.

But around 300 people have either left or were intercepted trying to leave Austria to fight in Syria, according to the interior ministry. Around 40 have died there while some 90 have come back.

On Friday, police detained an Austrian national of Albanian origin for allegedly planning a terror attack in Vienna.

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

 



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