Three Kurdish Finns arrested in Iraq

Three Turku men arrested in Iraq on suspicion of terrorist contacts

According to report on Finnish television, three men from Turku had been arrested in Iraq, suspected of contacts with terrorist organisation. The investigative programme MOT on YLE TV-1 revealed on Monday that the three Finnish citizens of Kurdish origin had been arrested in the summer. One of them had been released for lack of evidence. The YLE journalist found the two in ain Iraqi prison in Suleiman, in the Kurdish regions of Iraq. Officials say that they had been in contact with the Ansar al-Islam and Ansar al-Sunna Islamist groups, which have claimed responsibility for a number of murders, kidnappings, and bombings in Iraq. One Kurdish man who came to Finland in 1996 is suspected of leading a group in Turku which is part of a broader organisation of extremists. According to MOT, the group has raised funds for activities in Iraq, and the money has been sent to the area in the form of cash, taken there by individual travellers. Producers of the programme say that the information is based on several sources that are independent of each other. A man who is suspected to be the leader of the Turku group, was arrested in Iraq in late May, and again in August.

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