• Sunday, 19 May 2024

Three teens arrested in Germany for allegedly plotting terror attack

Three teens arrested in Germany for allegedly plotting terror attack

Dusseldorf, 12 April 2024 (dpa/MIA) - German authorities have arrested three teenagers aged 15 and 16 on suspicion of plotting a deadly Islamist terrorist attack in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, prosecutors said on Friday.

The state's Central Office for the Prosecution of Terrorism (ZenTer NRW) sought an arrest warrant for the teenagers over the Easter holiday.

They are suspected of plotting a terrorist attack "in accordance with the aims and ideology of [extremist militia organization] Islamic State."

The detained suspects are a 15-year-old girl from Dusseldorf, a 16-year-old girl from the Märkischer Kreis district and a 15-year-old boy from the Soest district, located about 100 kilometres to the east of Dusseldorf.

A fourth suspect has reportly been identified in the south-western German state of Baden-Württemberg, and the local court there has issued an arrest warrant.

According to investigators, the teenagers are accused of having agreed to commit murder and manslaughter in conjunction with the preparation of a serious act of violence endangering the state. The presumption of innocence applies in all stages of the proceedings.

Security sources told dpa that the young people had formed a chat group, but had not drawn up a concrete attack plan for a particular time and place.

However, sources said that the cities of Dortmund, Dusseldorf and Cologne were discussed as targets, and attacks with knives and Molotov cocktails on people in churches or police officers in police stations had been considered.

The sources said that authorities had also conducted searches as part of the investigation. A machete and a dagger were seized in Dusseldorf, but no evidence of the construction of incendiary devices was discovered.

Sources said that the father of the Dusseldorf suspect had already attracted attention from authorities in the past because he had allegedly collected donations for the Islamic State.

The investigators declined to reveal how the suspected terrorists were tracked down, but said that foreign intelligence agencies "did not play a role."

Photo: MIA archive