German Police Bust Islamist Cell Suspected of Planning Berlin Synagogue Attack
German police on Tuesday busted a suspected Islamist terror cell that was scouting locations — including a Berlin synagogue — for a potential attack.
According to German news magazine Spiegel, the suspects were found to be in possession of videos showing the synagogue, leading authorities to believe they were plotting to target the building.
The synagogue in question was reportedly Berlin’s New Synagogue, which dates to the 19th century. It was destroyed in World War II but rebuilt in the 1990s.
The suspects were spotted last September filming videos of the synagogue. Their car was tracked and linked to a group of men of Chechen origin, aged between 23 to 28, with Islamist connections.
The men were also seen acting suspiciously near a shopping mall, raising fears of a large-scale series of terror strikes.
This led to a months-long undercover investigation resulting in the series of police raids on Tuesday.
The Berlin attorney general’s office said that raids had been conducted in Berlin, Brandenburg, North Rhine-Westphalia and Thuringia. Cash, knives and computer data were confiscated.
Authorities believe there was no immediate risk of an attack.