Seven Syrians face terror-related charges in Malta

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VALLETTA, (Reuters) – Seven Syrian men were accused in a heavily guarded Maltese court on Sunday of having encouraged and trained others to commit terrorism in Europe.

The seven, aged between 21 and 27, were arrested on Saturday in an operation coordinated with the European police agency Europol, the Malta police said.

Maltese media identified the accused as Ajil Al Muhsen, Adnan Maashi, Yazan Abduklaziz, Ahmed Kadas, Khalil Al Mahmoud, Ahmed Ahmed and Mohammed Mohammed.

Five of them reside in Hamrun, another in Pieta and the other in Birkirkara.

The group are accused of association with an extremist organisation, inciting terrorism through public messages, recruiting or attempting to recruit others to commit terrorism, instructing others on the use of explosives or firearms and attempting to travel to Europe to commit terrorism.

They all pleaded not guilty and were remanded in custody at the end of the hearing. They did not ask for bail.

They face a maximum punishment of life imprisonment if convicted. No further details about the case were immediately available.

File photo by EPA-EFE/DOMENIC AQUILINA

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