German cracks down on suspected terrorist plot
June 26, 2013
In raids that took place throughout the German cities of Munich and Stuttgart, special police moved to counteract a suspected terrorist plot. While no suspects were detained or arrested as a result of these actions, the German chief federal prosecutor's office stated that intelligence gathering, rather than arrests, was the primary purpose of the raids. According to The New York Times, these took place on June 25, at around the same time that French and Belgian authorities were conducting similar operations and bringing in suspects. Citizens of these countries may be discussing the implications of this news with friends and relatives using a prepaid phone card.
The news source reported that two Tunisian men were suspected by German law enforcement of involvement in the alleged plot, which would have involved explosives delivered via remote-controlled aircraft. Other raids focused on tracking down four other men suspected of financing the purported terrorist activities through money laundering and other means. The Belgian operations focused on the same suspects, but also yielded no arrests.
In France, members of the nation's domestic intelligence agency, in conjunction with police, arrested a total of nine men - six in a Paris raid that took place on June 24 and three during a separate operation that took place in the country's southern region. The former series of arrests targeted alleged organized crime affiliates with suspected terrorist ties, while the latter took down purported jihadists who had made public threats against French society. As yet, none of the arrested individuals have been publicly named or officially charged with any illegal actions, as French law permits suspected terrorists to be held without being booked for a maximum of four days.
According to NPR, German federal prosecutors classified the planned attack as "a serious, state-threatening act of violence." Additionally, in interviews with one of the Tunisian suspect's neighbors in Munich, the unnamed man - who is married to a German woman - was characterized as being "friendly but private."