The refugee shelter in Grosshansdorf, northern Germany, where police arrested three Syrian refugees with suspected terror links on Sept. 13
German anti-terror police on Tuesday arrested three Syrian refugees who are suspected members of the Islamic State terror group. The men are also linked to last year's Paris attacks, Germany's interior minister said.
The arrests, which took place after pre-dawn raids in Schleswig-Holstein in northern Germany, form part of efforts by Germany to root out people sent to Europe by the extremist group amid the migrant influx. Germany's Federal Criminal Police Office said the three people detained were in possession of “extensive material,” but didn't elaborate.
However, Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said in a news conference that the men were smuggled out of Syria by the same smuggling operation used by some members of the group that attacked Paris in Nov. 2015, killing 130 people.
German police said separately that the attacks in Paris and Brussels over the past year showed that the Islamic State has used the migrant flow to send people to Europe. It said it’s received over 400 tips about people who may have a terrorist background, but most turned out to be wrong.
Police said Tuesday's suspects were known to authorities for months.
Four violent attacks over the summer, three of them linked to asylum seekers, shocked Germany. Authorities warned that the attacks would likely continue, though German Chancellor Angela Merkel has defended her migration policies which include a decision to allow more than a million asylum seekers to arrive in Germany last year. At home, the move has lost her conservative Christian Democratic Union party support ahead of a federal election next year. [...]