Dortmund bus attack suspect 'led ISIS unit'

BERLIN • Germany has issued an arrest warrant for a 26-year-old Iraqi national with suspected links to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group, who is being held in connection with a bomb attack on a popular football team, prosecutors said yesterday.

The statement said there was no direct proof yet that the man, identified as Abdul Beset A., was involved in Tuesday's attack on the bus of the Borussia Dortmund team that left one player injured, but there is evidence that he was the leader of a 10-man ISIS unit in Iraq involved in killings, kidnapping and blackmail.

The suspect will appear before a judge, who will decide whether to approve the arrest warrant issued by prosecutors, which will allow the man to be held for longer than 24 hours.

He left Iraq in March 2015 for Turkey, before heading to Germany early last year, and has maintained his contacts with the extremist group, the statement said.

Three explosions went off near a bus carrying Borussia Dortmund players as it was on its way to a home match against Monaco in the Champions League.

Bild newspaper said yesterday that military detonators were used to set off the three explosive devices, probably remotely, using a mobile phone.

The match was later rescheduled, but Borussia Dortmund lost 2-3. Its coach Thomas Tuchel accused European football's governing body Uefa of treating the bomb attack as if only a "beer can" had been thrown. He claimed they were informed only by text message that they would have to play the game against Monaco.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 14, 2017, with the headline 'Dortmund bus attack suspect 'led ISIS unit''. Print Edition | Subscribe