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Paris attacks: Two suspected Isis militants found posing as refugees in Austria

Police said the suspects may be connected to last month's attacks in Paris

Lizzie Dearden
Wednesday 16 December 2015 14:21 GMT
The men were found at a transit camp for refugees in the Austrian city of Salzburg, near the German border.
The men were found at a transit camp for refugees in the Austrian city of Salzburg, near the German border. (AFP/Getty Images)

Two suspected Isis militants believed to have links to the Paris attacks have been found posing as refugees in Austria.

The two men were found in a transit camp for asylum seekers in Salzburg at the weekend, reportedly carrying fake Syrian passports after travelling from territory held by the so-called Islamic State.

Austria’s Kronen Zeitung reported that the suspects are French, with Algerian or Pakistani heritage, and were awaiting orders for further terror attacks.

They are believed to have entered Europe via Greece and travelled along the Western Balkan route used by hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing conflict in the Middle East and Africa.

Austria: Hundreds of refugees arrive at German border

It is the same method used by at least two of the Isis militants who killed 130 people in Paris last month to reach their target.

Men carrying forged passports in the names of Ahmad al-Mohammad and M al-Mahmod reached the Greek island of Leros together on 3 October and were tracked through countries including Croatia, Hungary and Austria before entering France.

They blew themselves up with Frenchman Bilal Hadfi at the Stade de France.

Robert Holzleitner, from the Salzburg public prosecutor’s office, said the latest suspects arrested near the German border were suspected of “participation in a terrorist organisation” and could be connected to the attacks on 13 November.

He confirmed that they arrived in Europe from the Middle East but would not give further details.

The men are now being questioned by police and intelligence officials.

A 29-year-old man was arrested in Paris yesterday in relation to the attacks, while eight men have also been detained in Belgium, where the shootings are thought to have been organised, and another Belgian man was held in Turkey.

Three of the suspected nine attackers have still not been formally identified, while Salah Abdeslam remains on the run.

Additional reporting by AP

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