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Iraqi arrested in connection with Dortmund bus attack led ISIS unit

 
 
 
 
 
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A suspect detained in connection with the bombing of the Borussia Dortmund team bus came to Germany from Iraq, where he supposedly led an Islamic State unit responsible for numerous abductions and killings, the Federal Prosecutor’s Office said.

The Federal Prosecutor’s Office (GBA) said in a statement on Thursday it has issued an arrest warrant against a 26-year-old Iraqi national, identified as Abdul Beset A., on suspicion of having links to Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL).

The suspect was earlier detained in connection with the bombing of a bus carrying the Borussia Dortmund football team to a Champions League game against AS Monaco. The GBA’s statement noted investigators have so far produced “no evidence” of the suspect’s direct involvement in the attack.

However, it is strongly suspected that Abdul Beset A. joined IS in late 2014 in Iraq. Later, he led a unit of 10 militants whose task was “to prepare and execute abductions, extortions and killings.”

In March 2015, he traveled to Turkey and then arrived in Germany at the beginning of 2016, the GBA said. The suspect maintained contact with IS even from inside Germany, it added.

Tuesday’s bus blast involved three explosives hidden in a hedge and remotely triggered as the vehicle left Borussia Dortmund’s hotel and headed for the stadium 10km (6 miles) away. One of the team’s players was injured as the blast shattered the windows at the back of the bus.

The investigation stated that the team had been deliberately targeted by pipe bombs packed with sharp metal contents. The Prosecutor’s Office later classified the incident as a terrorist attack.

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