BARI, Italy Police in the southern Italian city of Bari have arrested an Iraqi man suspected of helping 11 foreign Islamist militants come to Italy, from exactly where they had moved on to France, Belgium and other European countries.
Particular operations police named the man as Majid Muhamad, 45, who they said had obtained false passports to allow the suspected militants to enter Italy in between March and September this year.
The police mentioned Muhamad, who was released last year following serving ten years in jail for international terrorism, had also discovered temporary accommodation for the suspected militants, who came from Pakistan, Egypt, Iran, Morocco and Turkey.
Police said the man was tied to an imam who had lived in the Molenbeek neighborhood of Brussels, but they did not say there have been any direct links to the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris that killed 130 men and women.
Italy has enhanced its controls on Islamist suspects following the Paris attacks.
In current days it has expelled 4 Moroccans suspected of promoting jihadism and arrested four Kosovars suspected of being element of a jihadist cell that spread Islamist propaganda and produced threats against Pope Francis.
(reporting by Vincenzo Damiani in Bari and Valentina Consiglio in Rome, writing by Gavin Jones, editing by Angus MacSwan)