Swiss police arrest aspiring Islamic militant at Zurich airport

GENEVA (AFP) - A 25-year-old Swiss man suspected of trying to travel to Syria or Iraq to join Islamic militants has been arrested at Zurich airport, the federal prosecutor's office said on Wednesday.

The man, from the Zurich area, was arrested on Tuesday while seeking to board a plane to Istanbul, Turkey.

The unidentified man was accused of having links to a group banned in Switzerland and supporting a criminal organisation.

The arrest demonstrates "the systematic legal pursuit of all people in Switzerland who are trying to take part in jihadist terrorism," the prosecutors said.

Last year, two people were sentenced to prison for backing a criminal organisation and public appeals to violence - a reference to Internet propaganda.

Three Iraqi men also arrested last year on suspicion of backing the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group are facing charges.

The rising numbers of Europeans going to fight in Iraq and Syria have worried governments who fear that battle-hardened veterans could return and unleash terror attacks and violence.

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