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German court sentences Syrian for membership in terrorist group

By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Hamburg (dpa) - A 25-year-old Syrian refugee was handed a young offender‘s sentence of two years and nine months on Tuesday for membership in an Islamist militia in his home country.

The court found that the man, who entered Germany in 2015, had joined the Ahrar al-Sham militia in his home town of Tabqa in northern Syria in 2013, fighting initially against Syrian government forces and subsequently against Islamic State forces.

Presiding judge Norbert Sakuth said the militia, which at times had 20,000 men under arms, had accepted that civilian casualties would result from its actions. The German authorities view Ahrar al-Sham as a terrorist organization.

The court found the accused guilty of membership in a terrorist organization, but dropped proceedings relating to membership in Islamic State, for which it found no evidence.

The court heard that the Syrian, one of nine children, had received little schooling and remained illiterate. His father had died when he was young, and, when his mother died in 2014, he decided to leave his home, which had fallen under the control of Islamic State.

After fighting once for Ahrar al-Sham against Islamic State for 100 dollars a month, he fled Syria for Germany via Turkey in the summer of 2015.


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(14.11.2018 17:16)

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