Arrests in Oberursel

April 30th, 2015 - Today, police and the local prosecutor's office confirmed that they have arrested a couple under the suspicion that they had been "preparing for a severe crime intended to pose a threat to the state", which is a statutory offence often cited in terrorism related cases.

Here is a short list of what we know and what we don't know (yet).

According to the authorities, the couple are a man and a woman in their mid-thirties with ties in the Salafi community in the Frankfurt region. In a raid in their flat, police found weapons parts and ammunition as well as several chemical materials and a pipe bomb that is believed to be functioning. 

Some media are reporting that the man has ties to al-Qaida. The authorities have not commented on that. 

I cannot confirm it at this point but would point out that knowing people who are members of al-Qaida or have at some point been associating with al-Qaida is not necessarily the same as having connections to al-Qaida. 

Authorities say that they do not at this point know of a particular plan for an attack but are confident that they have indeed foiled on. One reason for taking action at this point was that the man had been observed along the route of a bike race scheduled for tomorrow. 

Authorities are also not commenting on whether they believe that there are accomplices. They stressed that the investigation was ongoing. 

According to my information, authorities have at this point no indications that the couple has travelled to Syria recently. 

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