French police arrest six suspected Syria jihadists

Photo: French police arrest six suspected Syria jihadists / Arab World

France's interior minister said police arrested six people Tuesday in northeastern France in a roundup of suspected jihadists who traveled to fight in Syria's civil war, Al Arabiya reported.

The sweep around dawn in Strasbourg came weeks after authorities announced a new push to prevent French militants from traveling to Syria.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the six were suspected of participating in a jihadist network, and recently traveled to Syria.

In a brief statement at his ministry, Cazeneuve said the sweep "went down perfectly" and showed "the total determination of the government to fight with all its power against terrorism and the enlisting of youths in violent radicalization." The suspects were in police custody.

Cazeneuve didn't make any reference to a news report on Europe-1 radio earlier saying that the sweep involved a police investigation of 14 young men who had told their parents they were going on vacation in December but instead went to south Turkey and eventually to Syria.

Hundreds of young French militants have traveled to Syria. Authorities fear they could return home with fighting skills and ambitions to carry out attacks.

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