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Monday, February 6, 2023

Austria: Security forces arrest 30 radical Islamists as Chancellor Kurz declares ban on political Islam

by A.P.

60 homes are searched as crackdown on radical Islam gains steam

On Monday morning, just two days before Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced plans to enact new laws that would allow for the criminal prosecution of those who propagate political Islamic ideologies, security forces arrested 30 suspected Islamists in a series of predawn raids which saw more than 60 residences searched.

The raids, named Operation Luxor, followed last week’s deadly terror attack which saw a convicted Islamic State supporter gun down four people in the Vienna’s city center, and targeted the Muslim Brotherhood, Austrian branches of the Palestinian militant organization Hamas, and other international groups which openly advocate for Sharia law in Austria.

Those arrested during the sweeps, which took place across the states of Vienna, Styria, Carinthia, and Lower Austria, are alleged to have been involved in money laundering activities, the financing of terrorism, and the formation of a terrorist association, the Daily Mail reports.

Security forces seized laptops, smartphones, large amounts of cash, documents, but found no weapons of explosives during the searches of the residences. Additionally, bank accounts and financial assets were frozen so that investigators can trace flows of cash which “may be relevant with regard to the financing of terror”, the state prosecutor in Graz said.

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