Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Benin feels the pinch of Nigeria's economic woes

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Deutsche Bank shares recover after turbulent week

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Inside Aleppo: 'Feels like prison'

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The Legacy of Shimon Peres, The Battle of Aleppo (Part 1)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Trump-Clinton Debate, Colombia Peace Deal, Death of the BlackBerry (Part 2)

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Backstage at Paris Fashion Week

Read more

FASHION

Paris Fashion Week: Saint Laurent, Lanvin, present new designers

Read more

#THE 51%

Online and proud: Iranian women use social media in a campaign for equality

Read more

#TECH 24

Say hello to Pepper!

Read more

France

French police arrest six in sweep of suspected Syria jihadists

© Afp

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-05-13

French police have arrested six people in an operation targeting France-based jihadists suspected of travelling to fight in Syria's civil war, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said Tuesday.

The operation in Strasbourg came near dawn and followed weeks after authorities announced a new push to prevent French militants from travelling to Syria.

Cazeneuve said the six were suspected of participating in a jihadist network and had recently travelled to the strife-torn nation.

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 radicalisation”. 

He said an investigating judge is handling the case.

Cazeneuve did not discuss an earlier news report on French radio that the sweep involved an ongoing police investigation into 14 young men who told their parents in December that they were going on vacation but instead went to southern Turkey and eventually to Syria.

Hundreds of young French militants have reportedly travelled to Syria to join in the fighting.

Authorities fear they could return home with newly acquired military skills and ambitions to carry out attacks within France.

Last month French authorities announced a series of measures aimed at deterring youths from joining the ranks of Islamist militants in Syria, including a "hotline" for suspicious parents and family members to alert authorities and measures for seizing passports from those suspected of planning to become fighters abroad.

The French Interior Ministry estimated then that nearly 700 French citizens or residents have made their way into Syria since the conflict began.

In February FRANCE 24 featured the exclusive testimony of a 27-year-old Frenchman who left his Paris home along with his wife and her two young daughters to join a jihadist group in Syria.

"I'm often asked what happens to people who leave to wage jihad in Syria when they return to France,'' Cazeneuve said in his comments Tuesday. "It's simple: They're connected with a terrorist enterprise, [so they are] arrested and handed over to justice.''

(FRANCE 24 with AP)

Date created : 2014-05-13

  • FRANCE - SYRIA

    FRANCE 24 EXCLUSIVE: Confessions of a French jihadist in Syria

    Read more

  • FRANCE - SYRIA

    France’s 'anti-jihad' hotline gets results

    Read more

  • FRANCE - SYRIA

    French jihadist defends taking baby to war-torn Syria

    Read more

COMMENT(S)