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Saturday, July 24, 2004

German police raid mosques

July 24, 2004
STUTTGART: Police raided mosques and Muslim community centres in two southern German states Friday in what authorities said was an attempt to learn more about extremist networks.

Some 400 police officers searched 18 buildings in Baden-Wuerttemberg, checking occupants’ papers as part of attempts to track Islamic extremists, the state Interior Ministry said in a statement. “The goal is to continue an intensive fight against criminal Islamists and to uncover the networked structures of Islamic extremists and terrorists,” the statement said. Authorities announced no arrests.

In parallel raids in neighboring Rhineland-Palatinate, some 230 police officers questioned 235 people and searched 102 vehicles. Five people were taken into custody on suspicion of being in Germany illegally. “With the background of the recent attacks in Madrid and Iraq, security authorities believe there is a high potential of Islamist and extremist offenders also in Germany,” state police said. FR Reprint.

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