Germany: Iraqi charged with aiding terror group

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Germany's federal prosecutor has charged an Iraqi national with providing financial aid and logistical support to the Ansar al-Islam terrorist group.

The man, identified only as Burhan B., is alleged to have passed funds of as much as 22,000 euros ($28,607) to the group at least three times between Nov. 2003 and May 2004 and thereby supported the organization, the prosecutor's office said in an e-mailed statement today. The 37-year-old also breached export control rules by transferring the money, the prosecutor said.

Burhan B., who has been held in custody in Germany since June 12, 2006, was in close contact with Ata A. R., who is alleged to have been part of Ansar-al Islam's leadership in Germany, the prosecutor office said.

Ata A. R. and two other Iraqi nationals identified only as Mazen H. and Rafik Y. went on trial on June 20 last year in the southern German city of Stuttgart. They are charged with attempting to assassinate former Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi, the first leader of the Iraq Interim Governing Council following the 2003 ouster of Saddam Hussein, during a visit to Berlin in December 2004.

Two others, Dieman A. I. and Ferhad Kanabi A., alias Kawa H., went on trial separately on June 20 at the Munich Highest Regional Court charged with membership of the same group. They are accused of providing Ata A. R. with financial and logistical aid or transferring money to help finance the group.

Ansar al-Islam was formed in September 2001 in northern Iraq to fight for a religious state there, according to the prosecutor's office. The group has publicly called itself Jaish Ansar al-Sunna since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 and directed attacks against coalition forces and foreigners in Iraq.

Source: Bloomberg (English)

See also: Germany: Terrorist trial opens

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