Germany arrests two Syrians over Al Nusra execution video

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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Authorities accuse Syrian men of supporting Al Qaeda-affiliated group amid growing hope Assad allies could also face justice in German courts

The installation by Syrian artist Khaled Barakeh consists of structures dressed in clothes that belong to Syrian activists currently residing in diaspora, in Koblenz on the sidelines of a trial on state-sponsored torture in Syria.

Syrian artist Khaled Barakeh poses in front of his installation called 'The Muted Demonstration.'

Wafa Mustafa sits between pictures of victims of the Syrian regime as she holds a picture of her father. AFP

Wafa Mustafa during a protest outside the trial against two Syrian alleged former intelligence officers accused for crimes against humanity. AFP

Syrian human rights lawyer Anwar Al Bunni in exile in Berlin on April 9, 2020. AFP

When Anwar al-Bunni crossed paths with fellow Syrian Anwar Raslan in a DIY store in Germany five years ago, he recognised him as the man who had thrown him into prison around a decade earlier. AFP

Anwar Al Bunni said people like Anwar Raslan "cannot think as a human". AFP

Anwar Raslan is being tried on the principle of universal jurisdiction, which allows a foreign country to prosecute crimes against humanity. AFP

Omaima A, the widow of high-ranking Islamic State member Denis Cuspert, arrives for the first day of her trial. Getty

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Jamie Prentis

July 13, 2020

July 13, 2020

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Two Syrians have been arrested in Germany on suspicion of executing a soldier and for supporting Jabhat Al Nusra when the group was affiliated with Al Qaeda during the civil war in Syria.

Khedr AK is suspected of having joined Jabhat Al Nusra before July 2012, while Sami AS allegedly supported the group, which was designated as a terrorist organisation by the UAE in 2014.

Khedr AK is alleged to have been involved in the killing of a captured lieutenant colonel in the Syrian Army on June 10, 2012, along with other members of the terrorist group.

He allegedly guarded the handcuffed prisoner, who had been severely tortured, on the way to the execution site where he was shot.

Sami AS is accused of filming the execution, can be heard praising the soldier being killed and then released the footage for propaganda purposes.

The two were detained Naumburg and Essen on Monday morning and had their homes searched. They are expected to face a federal judge later in the day.

Nearly 800,000 Syrian refugees arrived in Germany in 2015 as the country opened its doors during the European migrant crisis in a move that has since become among the most contentious in German politics.

The large number of Syrians fleeing the civil war that broke out 2011 has led to the arrest and trial in Germany of those believed to have committed crimes during the conflict.

This includes not only members of terrorist groups such as ISIS and Al Qaeda affiliates but also Syrian regime officials.

A landmark trial of two former Syrian intelligence officials in the city of Koblenz on crimes against humanity has sparked hope that allies of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad will see justice for the vast array of crimes they are believed to have committed.

Alleged former ISIS members have also been detained. The German-Tunisian Omaima Abdi, who lived in Hamburg, is on trial for crimes against humanity and enslaving a 13-year-old Yazidi girl.

An Iraqi man, Taha Al-J, whose family name is unknown, is accused of murdering a five-year-old Yazidi slave and is in court in Frankfurt.

Updated: July 13, 2020 07:59 PM

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