Home > News > World
Tuesday July 1, 2014 MYT 10:01:41 PM
Tuesday July 1, 2014 MYT 10:03:26 PM
VIENNA (Reuters) - A man accused of travelling to Syria to receive weapons training from Islamist militants was sentenced in Austria on Tuesday to 21 months in jail, in the latest case to highlight the lure of the Syrian conflict for radicalised young men based in Europe.
The Vienna-based 21-year-old had denied charges of joining a terrorist organisation, which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
The unnamed defendant was arrested in December as he returned to Austria from what he had described as a holiday in his birthplace of Turkey. Prosecutors said he instead want to a training camp on the Syrian-Turkish border.
Judge Norbert Gerstberger said the man joined up with the Nusra Front, al Qaeda's Syrian wing, and got "at least ideological instruction and basic weapons training" at a camp north of Aleppo, although he was a low-level participant, the Austria Press Agency reported.
A court spokeswoman confirmed the verdict, which is subject to appeals from both the prosecution and the defence.
Many hundreds of young Europeans are estimated to have travelled to fight against President Bashar al-Assad in Syria's civil war, and European security officials are concerned that some of those returning from the uprising could stage attacks back home.
Three people were shot dead at the Jewish Museum in Brussels in May, and a Frenchman thought to have returned recently from Syria was arrested over the killings.
Austria is home to roughly half a million Muslims or 6 percent of the population, and about 100 are estimated to be fighting Assad's government.
Austrian authorities last month arrested a 41-year-old imam of Chechen origin suspected of radicalising Muslims and recruiting them to fight in Syria. The suspect has denied the allegations.
(Reporting by Michael Shields; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)
Merkel to visit synagogue, discuss racism in Hungary
Egyptian poet goes on trial accused of contempt of Islam
Two Israeli soldiers, U.N. peacekeeper killed in Israel-Hezbollah violence
Greek PM Tsipras freezes privatisations, markets tumble
Plenty of great fun and adventure pursuits in Adelaide
Healthy living in the heart of Ampang
LG Electronics says 2014 profit up 46%, meets estimates
Chelsea's Costa charged over alleged semi-final stamp
Airlines take off surcharge
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)