Arrest warrant for youths on suspicion of terrorist attack against "Christians and police"

Country: Germany

Date of incident: April 12, 2024

The German national security forces have unearthed a terrorist cell of minors in Düsseldorf. According to the newspaper Bild, the youths wanted to attack "Christians ("unbelievers") in churches" and "police officers in police stations" with knives and Molotov cocktails in the name of the ISIS. Arrest warrants have been issued.

According to the media, the youths were communicating in a common chat group in which they were exchanging plans to attack churches, synagogues, and a local sports club in Iserlohn. Furthermore, the cities Dortmund, Düsseldorf and Cologne were mentioned as possible targets. They were also planning to obtain weapons.

The police first arrested two girls (15 and 16). The father of the first suspect has already been under police investigation due to terrorist financing and illegal possession of weapons. During a house search the police found a machete and a dagger and also confiscated the phone of one of the girls. On the phone the police found a chat group, in which several youths discussed terrorism plans. After further investigations, two teenage boys (15 and 16) who were part of the chat group could be identified by the police and taken into police custody. 

The public prosecutor of the "Central Office for the Prosecution of Terrorism" has now announced that the Düsseldorf district court issued arrest warrants for three young people. The presumption of innocence applies until a final conviction.

Update: The four arrested young people arrested are said to have been planning an Islamist attack with bombs. This emerges from a confidential report from the North Rhine-Westphalia Ministry of the Interior to the state legislator. Previously, there had been talk of Molotov cocktails. According to the paper, the young people exchanged instructions on how to make explosives via chat. The 16-year-old girl had announced in the chats that she would also bring her brother's machete to the attack. FAZ 

Sources: Welt, Bild, nau.chDer Standard