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German Cops Raid Apartments Linked to Self-Proclaimed 'Emir'

Police in Germany investigating a suspected Islamist extremist terror cell raided 13 apartments early Tuesday.

MAINZ, Germany — Police investigating a suspected Islamist extremist terror cell raided 13 apartments early Tuesday in Berlin, Potsdam and a town in the state of Thuringia.

About 200 officers took part in the raids, which began at 6 a.m. local time (midnight ET) and were connected to last week's detention of two men suspected of planning attacks in Syria, police said.

“There have been no arrests, as we are presently looking for evidence in the investigation and are searching for things like storage media and bank remittance slips," Berlin Police spokesman Stefan Redlich told NBC News.

A total of 11 men and one woman were being questioned. The suspects were aged between 20 and 49 years old and originated from Turkey and the Caucasus.

Two suspects at the center of the alleged terror plan — a 41-year-old Turkish national and self-proclaimed "emir" who has been identified by authorities only as Ismet D. and his alleged finance chief identified as Emin F. — were detained on Friday and remain in police custody.

The pair are accused of providing logistical and financial support to fighters in Syria, officials told NBC News. Police said they were ideologically close to ISIS and Chechen extremist groups fighting in Syria.

The targets of Tuesday's raids were members of the "emir's" group and people who have attended his seminars.

German authorities are investigating a number of terror plots, including some 350 people with suspected links to ISIS, the country’s Justice Minister Heiko Maas told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday. A separate report in Sunday's Welt am Sonntag paper said that about 100 suspected terror cells were under surveillance.


- Andy Eckardt