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Wanted jihadist calls Vienna mosque 'pro Isis'

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The mosque in Floridsdorf. Photo: APA/Techt
15:02 CEST+02:00
An Austrian jihadist wanted by Interpol has said that he was recruited to the Isis terrorist organisation in the Floridsdorf mosque in Vienna. However, the Islamic Centre denies any connection to Isis.

Firas Houidi,19, is charged with belonging to a terrorist organization and incitement to commit serious crimes. He told TV station Puls 4 that “the director of the Islamic Centre in Floridsdorf will be able to give you answers. They are arming Isis.”

“It’s nonsense. We condemn Isis and distance ourselves from its followers and sympathisers,” the spokesman for the Islamic Centre, Imam Salim Mujkanovic, told Puls 4. “If we know anyone is trying spread radical ideas we will notify the authorities,” he added.

He said the centre is closely cooperating with the police and the Federal Agency for State Protection (BAT).

According to media reports Houidi is currently in the north of Syria, in Raqqa, from where he regularly reports via Facebook on his experience as an Isis fighter.

Alexander Marakovits, spokesman for the Interior Ministry, told the Austrian Press Agency that he was aware of Houidi’s allegations, and that the mosque was “under observation”. He confirmed that there was cooperation between BAT and the centre.

Puls 4 spoke to Houidi via Facebook, as Isis would not allow him to do a video interview. The full report will be broadcast at 6.45pm, on Monday evening.

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