6 pilgrims arrested at the airport over terrorism

Posted by News Express | 23 October 2013 | 3,710 times

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For their alleged links with terror group, Boko Haram, six persons have been arrested at the Maiduguri International Airport while returning from hajj in Saudi Arabia.

A combined team of the Seventh Division of the Nigerian Army and the police in Borno arrested the terror suspects on Monday.

The suspects, according to the army and police authorities, have been on the wanted lists of the Joint Task Force (JTF) since February this year over their alleged membership of the Boko Haram.

A top military officer of the Seventh Division of the Nigerian Army that co-ordinated the arrest at the airport said in Maiduguri: “Yesterday’s (Monday) arrest of terror suspects was facilitated with the co-operation of the airport authorities and the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCOM) by allowing security personnel do their job thoroughly at the arrival hall of the airport at dawn.

“The photographs of the suspects enabled us to identify them despite their disguise to perform hajj along with other pilgrims in Saudi Arabia. Their identities were successfully revealed at the arrival hall of the airport with their passport photographs used in the hajj.”

On how they succeeded in being part of the hajj flights, he said: “The suspects, before their departure to Saudi Arabia and during the processing of their visas and other travelling documents, changed their names, but their photographs remained unchanged, as they had been sealed to their passports and other travelling documents.”

Confirming the incident Tuesday in Maiduguri, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Gideon Jibrin, said that the Boko Haram members on the wanted lists of both the JTF and police were arrested at the airport on Monday on their arrival from Saudi Arabia.

•Text excerpted from The Guardian. Photo shows a group of returning Hajj pilgrims.

Source: News Express

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