Tue, Jan 25, 2005 - Page 6 News List

Police in Germany arrest suspected al-Qaeda members

NY TIMES NEWS SERVICE , MAINZ, GERMANY

Police arrested two men on Sunday who are suspected of being members of al-Qaeda, saying they were planning suicide bombings in Iraq.

They said the suspects had also tried to buy a small amount of enriched uranium from a contact in Luxembourg for undisclosed purposes.

One of the men, whom the authorities identified as Ibrahim Mohamed K., a 29-year-old Iraqi who lives here, is suspected of having recruited suicide bombers in Germany, and has had contacts with senior al-Qaeda leaders, a German prosecutor, Kay Nehm, said on Sunday at a news conference in Karlsruhe. By German custom, the surnames of suspects in criminal cases are not disclosed.

Nehm said the Iraqi man had trained in al-Qaeda camps in Afghanistan before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks and spent a year there afterward fighting US troops.

While in Afghanistan the suspect had contact with Osama bin Laden and Ramzi Binalshibh, who acted as a link between bin Laden and the men in Hamburg who are believed to have carried out the Sept. 11 attacks in the US, Nehm said.

Back in Germany, Ibrahim Mohamed K. found a willing recruit in Yasser Abu S., 31, a Libyan-born Palestinian, Nehm said.

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