German-Turkish man charged with terror links
Germany has never suffered an attack by Islamic extremists on its soil but a number of suspected plots have been uncovered and warnings have surfaced on the Internet.Berlin -- German prosecutors said on Wednesday they had charged a Turkish-German citizen with suspected links to one of four men currently on trial for allegedly plotting to attack US targets in Germany.
The 24-year-old, named only as Kadir T., was charged on November 20 with support of an "international terrorist organisation" and violating export laws, federal prosecutors said in a statement.
According to the charge sheet, T. regularly attended weekly meetings organised by Adem Yilmaz with the aim of recruiting new members for the Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), an extremist group with suspected links to Al-Qaeda.
Yilmaz and two others were arrested in September 2007, accused of mixing chemicals to make the equivalent of 410 kilogrammes (900 pounds) of explosives -- 100 times the amount used in the 2005 London bombings that killed more than 50 people.
A fourth man, Atilla Selek, was arrested soon after in Turkey. The four, known as the Sauerland cell after the German region where they were captured, are currently on trial in Duesseldorf and could face 15 years in prison.
Other participants in the meetings included Huseyin Ozgun, a Turkish citizen jailed for 14 months by Germany on October 13 for procuring equipment including night-vision goggles for the IJU, prosecutors said.
Also present were Yilmaz's brother Burhan Yilmaz, charged on February 11 with supporting the IJU by helping to supply money and equipment, and Cuneyt C. and Sadullah K., who according to the IJU died as "martyrs," prosecutors said.
Kadir T., who has dual German and Turkish nationality and has been in custody since August 26, "has been a supporter of violent jihad (holy war)" of the IJU since these meetings, prosecutors said.
In June 2007 he is alleged to have bought a video camera and night-vision goggles which were then sent by Adem Yilmaz to Sadullah K. in Turkey, who is believed to have given them to the IJU in the Pakistan-Afghan border region Waziristan.
Germany, which has around 4,300 troops in Afghanistan, has never suffered an attack by Islamic extremists on its soil but a number of suspected plots have been uncovered and warnings have surfaced on the Internet.