17 Islamic State supporters entered Europe as refugees, report says

Seventeen supporters of the Islamic State extremist group entered Europe as refugees, Frankfurter Allgemeinen Zeitung reported Saturday citing German intelligence.

Most of them are either dead or in custody, the report said, adding that two of them were part of the group of terrorists who attacked Paris in November.

Hans-Georg Maassen, the head of Germany's domestic intelligence agency, was quoted as saying there was "reliable evidence" that the 17 were working on behalf of Islamic State.

He said that while Islamic State did not need to use known refugee routes it was "a show of power" on part of the terrorist group.

Last month, three Syrians were arrested in three different German states on suspicion of planning a terrorist attack in Dusseldorf on behalf of Islamic State.

The authorities said that the three had been posing as refugees and living in asylum seekers' homes.

The alleged plot foresaw two militants blowing themselves up with explosive vests in the western German city's historic centre and the remaining men killing as many people as possible with firearms.

In recent months, police have conducted a series of raids targeting Islamists sent to Germany on behalf of Islamic State.

Thus far, there has been no major terrorist attack on German soil.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's promise of sanctuary brought some 1.1 million migrants to Germany in 2015, with most from conflict zones in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Last update: Sat, 02/07/2016 - 16:35

View the discussion thread.


More from Europe

Police suspect tear gas in London City airport "chemical incident"

Police said they suspected CS gas could have caused a "chemical incident" that led to a three-hour evacuation of ...

EU summit fails to break Belgian impasse over Canada trade deal

EU leaders ended two days of talks Friday with a failure to break a regional blockade to a landmark deal the bloc is...

Germany's economy "has many problems," Italian premier Renzi says

Germany has "many" economic problems, including a large trade surplus which violates European Union rules, the...

Tusk: EU leaders agree on need for better tools against cheap imports

EU leaders have made progress on ramping up the bloc's protection against unfairly cheap imports, European Council...

Catalonia to uphold bullfighting ban despite veto by top court

The Spanish region of Catalonia wants to uphold its ban on bullfighting despite the ban being overturned by the...