Four suspected ISIS members were arrested in Germany after allegedly planning to attack U.S. Air Force bases.
On Wednesday, officials said the men had obtained firearms and were building an explosive device meant to be used in targeted attacks southeast of Berlin. The suspects were reportedly caught spying on American facilities in Germany as well as a person said to be critical of Islam.
Authorities said another man, thought to be the group’s leader, has been in jail since last year. They also said the suspects originally planned to conduct their attacks against the Tajikistan government.
“The suspects are believed to have joined so called Islamic State in January 2019 and founded a terror cell in Germany,” explained Herbert Reul, Interior Minister of the North Rhine-Westphalia state. “They are thought to have originally planned to travel to their home country of Tajikistan to participate in the armed holy fight against the government there; they then abandoned that plan and instead planned deadly attacks in Germany.”
Officials further said they believe the five men were instructed to carry out the attack by other ISIS leaders in Syria and Afghanistan. The group is set to all be charged with “membership in a terrorist organization.”