500 German Police Arrest Six Syrian ISIS Fighters Suspected of Christmas Market Terror Plot
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On Tuesday morning, 500 German police officers carried out anti-terror raids, detaining six Syrian refugees suspected of fighting for the Islamic State (ISIS). Authorities say they were planning a terror attack six days before Christmas. Reports suggest that the target may have been a Christmas market.
Prosecutors in Frankfurt said that six Syrian men between the ages of 20 and 28 were taken into custody. Roughly 500 police officers took part in the raids of eight apartments in the German cities of Kassel, Hanover, Essen, and Leipzig.
According to prosecutors, the men are suspected of "planning an attack with weapons or explosives on a public target in Germany." Authorities added that the men had not yet finished preparing the attack.
Four of the suspects entered Germany as asylum-seekers in 2014 and the other two arrived in 2015, the German newspaper Deutsche-Welle reported. Refugees tipped off investigators about the men, who were reportedly active ISIS fighters in Syria.
The German newspaper Welt cited findings from the attorney general of Frankfurt that the Syrian suspects are ISIS supporters. They were arrested on suspicion of membership in a terrorist organization and preparation of a terrorist attack.