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Lebanon probes al-Qaeda links of train bombers

Published on August 29, 2006

29 August 2006

BEIRUT – A high-ranking security official said Tuesday that the three suspects held in Lebanon in connection with an alleged plot to bomb German trains last month are being checked for al-Qaeda links.

“For us now we need to know who is behind them or if they have al- Qaeda links in and outside Lebanon, and whether they plotted this mission on their own or someone gave them orders from Lebanon or outside Lebanon,” the official who requested anonymity told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa.

“Jihad Hamad who handed himself over to the Lebanese police last Thursday is wanted by the Germans, but the Lebanese police had been investigating his movements and contacts before he surrendered,” the source said.

The source who is close to the investigation said the German investigators were still in Lebanon and were being briefed daily by Lebanon’s general prosecutor Saeed Mirza on the outcome of the interrogation.

Lebanese Police said Monday the third suspect was a Lebanese national in his 30s, originally from the northern region of Akkar, the same area as two other suspects detained in Lebanon.

On Friday, a man identified as K H D was detained on information from the first suspect, identified as Jihad Hamad, who surrendered to Lebanese police Thursday.

Hamad, 20, was identified as one of two youths seen on security video at Cologne Station, each with a suitcase containing a bomb. The devices were left in trains on July 31, but failed to explode because of a construction flaw.

Another other suspect, Youssef Mohammed al-Hajdib, 21, a Lebanese student, was arrested in Germany the previous Saturday.


Subject: German news