Six people have been arrested in the Netherlands on suspicion of recruiting volunteers for jihad, or Islamic holy war, prosecutors said Tuesday after a year-long investigation.
The suspects, five men and a woman, were arrested in The Hague and Amsterdam late Monday and early Tuesday as part of a probe into an international Islamic terror network launched in November 2005, the prosecutor’s office said.
Among the suspects, who were not identified by name, are two Dutch nationals, a Turkish man, a Tunisian national, a Moroccan and one suspect with dual Dutch and Moroccan citizenship, prosecution spokesman Wim de Bruin said. The six are suspected of “recruiting radical Muslims for the international jihad”, a crime under recently amended Dutch laws.
Police are still investigating whether the suspects can also be charged with forming a terrorist organisation, the prosecutor’s office said.
They were not linked to other convicted terrorists in the Netherlands, like Muslim radical Mohammed Bouyeri who was convicted for the 2004 murder of filmmaker Theo van Gogh, or six terrorism suspects on trial in Amsterdam.
The investigation began after police received information about three men from The Hague who had travelled to Azerbaijan to take part in jihad. They were arrested by Azerbaijani authorities in Baku and sent back to the Netherlands.
“The three youths were suspected of being in contact with a network of extremist Muslims that was recruiting young men for the jihad,” prosecutors said.
Investigators discovered that potential jihadists were being recruited with inflammatory speeches, pamphlets and videos focusing on the supposed duty of all Muslims to take part in holy war.
Several suspects have also tried to get fake travel documents to travel to Iraq.
The six suspects are expected to appear before a judge later this week, who will then rule if they can be remanded in custody.
Source: Daily Times (English)
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