IS suspect planned to bomb Berlin airport
SYRIAN refugee arrested in Germany after being tied up by three compatriots was plotting to bomb a Berlin airport in the name of the Islamic State group, the head of German domestic intelligence said.
“He initially wanted to target trains in Germany before finally deciding on one of Berlin’s airports,” Hans-Georg Maassen told German public TV channel ARD.
While some German media outlets over the weekend suggested the suspect, Jaber Albakr, 22, had such a target in mind, this was the first official confirmation.
The decision to arrest the suspect was taken on October 7 after he bought hot-melt glue.
“We thought this was the last chemical product he needed to make a bomb,” said Mr Maassen.
Mr Albakr had narrowly slipped through the police net on October 8 when commandos raided his apartment and found 1.5 kilograms of TATP, the explosive used by jihadists in the Paris and Brussels attacks.
The explosives were “almost ready, or even ready for use”, said Joerg Michaelis, chief investigator in Saxony, adding that the suspect was apparently preparing a “bomb, possibly in the form of a suicide vest”.
After a two-day manhunt, police finally got their man with the help of three of Albakr’s fellow Syrians in the eastern city of Leipzig.
One of them walked into a police station with a photo of Mr Albakr on his mobile phone and told officers that “his flatmates had overpowered Albakr and tied him up, and that we should come to his apartment”, Mr Michaelis said.
The Syrians had been approached by Mr Albakr at Leipzig railway station and asked for shelter. –