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MOSCOW, November 27. /ITAR-TASS/ Russia’s law enforcers last night detained a group of extremists belonging to the extremist organization At Takfir wal-Hijra in Moscow. A large amount of weapons and explosives was seized, the Interior Ministry’s press-centre said on Wednesday.
“Fourteen members of the radical extremist organization At Takfir wal-Hijra were detained in a special operation in the territory of Moscow’s eastern district on the night of November 26-27,” the Interior Ministry’s press-centre said.
A member of the terrorist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami has been detained in Moscow.
The operation was carried out by police and the federal security service FSB with support from the OMON crack police force.
“In the course of searchers the operatives seized three make-shift explosive devices with fuses and stuffed with shrapnel (one of them was equipped with a belt) components of explosive devices, including detonators, cords, detonators, etc, handguns, hand grenades, cartridges and extremist literature,” the Interior Ministry said.
“According to the available information the cash raised through committing general crimes were used to finance the group,” the Interior Ministry said.
A decision to open a criminal case is about to be made.
At Takfir wal-Hijra (Expiation and Exodus) is one of the most radical international Islamist terrorist groups. Its activists profess the severing of all relations with the modern Muslim society, which they regard as heretic. Each of the group’s members is obliged to break all bonds with the state and society, including their own families.
The group’s members are prohibited from being photographed, keeping in touch with persons declared as infidels or obtaining any documents from official agencies.
The group was established in Egypt in the early 1970s.
On September 15, 2010 Russia’s Supreme Court declared At Takfir wal Hijra extremist and prohibited its activity in Russia.
On November 5 Russian police and FSB agents detained a Russian citizen who was recruiting women for At Takfir wal-Hijra. The man had been under surveillance for six months. It was found that the man, aged 31, a Ukraine-born Russian citizen, was recruiting young women and persuading them to join the group.
By the moment he was arrested the suspect had lured four young women into the group. He contacted them on Moscow streets or in social networks. He preferred to focus on modest, self-reserved and not very sociable women.
The man’s home was searched. The operatives found weapons and narcotic drugs, as well as extremist books. The man is under arrest and being investigated over criminal charges. If the printed matter he kept is found extremist, he wil face more charges.
It is known that three women the suspect had recruited refused to return home and preferred to stay with the followers of radical Islam in spite of attempts by police and FSB agents to explain to them the underlying motives of their handlers. Only one young woman has agreed to return to her parents following police explanations and briefings.