Italian authorities have arrested three Moroccan men for allegedly supporting terrorist cells linked to Osama bin Laden’s terrorist network, Italian state radio reported today.
The Italian news agency ANSA quoted Italian interior minister Giuseppe Pisanu, in France for a meeting with European counterparts, as saying the arrests indicated Italy was keeping up its crackdown on international terrorism.
The state radio report said the arrests were made on Saturday in three towns in northern Italy: Cremona; a suburb of Florence; and the Milan suburb of Varese. Among those arrested was an itinerant Islamic preacher, the report said.
The radio report said the men were suspected of helping to enrol recruits for terrorism camps and raising funds for terrorist cell activities.
Italian investigators have described Italy as a major European base for Islamic terrorist groups seeking logistical help such as providing false documents.
On Saturday, a message on an audiotape with the purported voice of bin Laden threatened suicide attacks against the US and some of its allies, including Italy, but there appeared to be no immediate link to the arrests in Italy and the taped warning.