News / Europe

3 al-Qaida Suspects Arrested in Norway, Germany

Janne Kristiansen, director of the Norwegian Police Security Service, speaks at a press conference in Oslo after three men were arrested in Norway on suspicion of preparing terrorist activities. Three people linked to Al-Qaeda were held in Norway for plan
Janne Kristiansen, director of the Norwegian Police Security Service, speaks at a press conference in Oslo after three men were arrested in Norway on suspicion of preparing terrorist activities. Three people linked to Al-Qaeda were held in Norway for plan

Three suspected al-Qaida members have been arrested in Norway and Germany, in what Norwegian and U.S. authorities say was a terrorist plot linked to similar ones in the United States and Britain.

Two of the men were arrested in Norway and one in Germany.  They were taken into custody Thursday after being under surveillance for more than a year.

Norwegian police said the arrests were made because news of the investigation was about to be published in the international media.  They did not say which country was the target of the foiled plot.

One of the men was identified as a Norwegian of Uighur origin.  The others included an Uzbek and an Iraqi.

Authorities believe the three were planning attacks with portable but powerful explosive devices like the ones involved in last year's thwarted attack on the New York City subway system.  A similar plot was broken up in the English city of Manchester.

Officials believe the plot involving the three men arrested Thursday was organized by Salah al-Somali -- a top al-Qaida planner who was killed in a U.S. drone attack in Pakistan late last year.

The U.S. Justice Department Wednesday announced charges against five alleged al-Qaida members accused of plotting to attack targets in the United States and Britain -- including a foiled 2009 plot to bomb the New York subway.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

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