TERRORISM

German police detain asylum-seeker allegedly planning Berlin suicide attack

German state police detained a teenage asylum-seeker on Tuesday on suspicion that he was planning a suicide attack in Berlin, the country’s capital.

Police in the state of Brandenburg said the unidentified asylum seeker, 17, was detained in the village of Gerswalde, about 60 miles northeast of Berlin.

The arrest came after the teenager apparently sent a farewell message to family members and told them that “he had joined the jihad,” or holy war, according to Brandenburg police.

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The message was sent to the suspect’s family within the last week and Brandenburg authorities were informed of it late Monday night by two other German states, Brandenburg police spokesman Torsten Herbst told The Associated Press.

Police are investigating but “evidence of the planning of a concrete act has not yet been identified,” said Herbst.

The state Interior Ministry’s office identified the asylum-seeker as Syrian, but investigators are inspecting whether the suspect registered as a Syrian but was from a different country.

The teenager, whose name has not been released, traveled to Germany in 2015 as an unaccompanied minor and registered as an asylum-seeker. He has been residing in a home for minor refugees in Gerswalde since 2016.

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The detainment comes a week after the Manchester terror attack that killed at least 22 people and injured dozens after an Ariana Grande concert.

Germany has experienced a number of violent attacks by Islamic extremists last year including the deadly truck attack on a Berlin Christmas market that killed 12 people and injured dozens. Responsibility for the attack, which was carried out by a Tunisian man who had been denied asylum in Germany, was later claimed by the Islamic State.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.