Syrian Asylum Seeker Questioned Over Suspected ISIS Links: Report

A Syrian refugee is being questioned by German police after allegedly boasting that he was involved with the militant group ISIS, a German newspaper has reported.

According to Welt am Sonntag, the man told other refugees in a shelter located in the northeast region of Brandenburg, that he had fought for ISIS and killed people. However, he was secretly filmed making the claims by other residents, prompting police to investigate. The suspect is reported to be a Syrian national.

The German federal police are now trying to establish whether or not the man does in fact have any links to ISIS, according to the newspaper.

Despite some figures, including the pope, voicing fears that ISIS fighters could infiltrate Europe by posing as asylum seekers, there has yet to be a confirmed case of this happening. Several photos posted to social media sites claiming to show militants posing as refugees have been proven false.

A Lebanese government minister warned last week that 2 percent—one in 50—of refugees traveling to Europe could be "radicals", according to the Telegraph newspaper. However, Education Minister Elias Bou Saab conceded that he had no firm evidence to support his theory, instead saying he had a "gut feeling" that it was happening.

An advisor to the Libyan government told the BBC in May that smugglers were hiding ISIS militants on the boats used by refugees to reach Europe, but experts warned that the claim was hard to verify. Christian Kaunert, an expert in terrorism and refugee issues at Dundee University, told the BBC at the time that it was "plausible—but whether it's absolutely credible is difficult to assess because by definition, when those boats come in, they go unnoticed."

Security experts and sources in the Italian Secret Service told Newsweek in February this year that Rome has become increasingly worried that ISIS members could infiltrate the country, after the group promised to "conquer Rome," and security was increased at several of Rome's most famous sites, including the Vatican, the Colosseum and St. Peter's Basilica.

Despite these measures, Matteo de Bellis of Amnesty International, told Newsweek at the time that, "Nothing in the information we have gathered in interviews with migrants and refugees who crossed the central Mediterranean, indicates that there may be an intention of ISIS or similar groups to reach Europe via the sea."

Newsweek has contacted the office of the German Public Prosecutor for comment.

Syrian Asylum Seeker Questioned Over Suspected ISIS Links: Report |