Last Somali freed in Dutch terror probe

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Dutch authorities on Thursday freed the last of 12 Somalis arrested in Rotterdam last Friday, though he and two others remain suspects in a possible Christmas terror attack, prosecutors said.

The 29-year-old, who has Dutch residence papers, was freed on instruction of the national prosecutor's office, they said in a statement.

"The man is still a suspect, as are two others aged 44 and 47" who were freed on Tuesday with three others no longer suspected in the case, the statement noted.

The 12 were arrested in the Dutch port city of Rotterdam late Friday following a tip-off from Dutch intelligence that a group of Somalis were planning to carry out a terrorist attack in the Netherlands on December 24 or 25.

On Sunday and Monday, six of them were either freed or handed over to immigration police as they were no longer considered suspects.

Investigations so far have yielded no weapons or explosives and no information about a possible target, the prosecution office said.

Spokesman Wim de Bruin said the three remaining suspects were free to leave the country.

"There are no restrictions on them," he said.

© 2010 AFP

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