The Federal Police concluded that Brazilian-born Syrian Mohamad Khir Abdulmajid tried to recruit at least five Brazilians to create a terrorist cell in Brazil linked to Hezbollah. Mohamad had a temporary arrest warrant in his name, but the Federal Court converted it into preventive detention. He is considered a fugitive and is in Interpol’s red division.
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At Least Five Recruited
The Syrian, together with the Lebanese Haissam Housin Diab, was looking for Brazilians with criminal records to join the group. At least five people would have been recruited with the aim of carrying out attacks in the country.
Attacks on the Jewish Community
Federal Police’s intel work found also that there was suspicion that planning for a possible terrorist attack in Brazil and neighboring countries was underway. The Federal Police verified, based on the analysis of telematic data and the contents of the suspect’ cell phone, that the Brazilian had carried out reconnaissance tasks in locations for possible attacks against the Jewish community in Brazil.
Lucas also trained in firearms shooting and acquired spying and surveillance devices.
Last Friday (01/12), a 38-year-old man with an Egyptian passport was prevented from traveling and deported after disembarking at terminal 3 at São Paulo International Airport, in Guarulhos. Federal police officers were warned by sources from the American intelligence service that the man had a history of links to terrorist groups and assessed that he could pose a threat to national security.
The fate of the Egyptian man was similar to that of a citizen from Morocco, who arrived in Guarulhos on July 12, from Buenos Aires, and was denied entry by the Brazilian authorities.
In addition to these two cases, at least 17 other foreigners were blocked from trying to enter Brazil in 2023 due to alleged links to terrorism. There is no evidence that the group planned to commit crimes in the country. Brazil is, according to experts, an intermediate destination for people linked to terrorist groups who want to reach, above all, the United States.
Among those repatriated this year were citizens with passports from Bahrain, Syria, Somalia, Turkey and Morocco.
Increase in Hate Crimes
After the intensification of the conflict between Israel and Hamas, cases of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia grew around the world. Many protests in support of both sides have been seen. In addition, many arrests on suspicion of terrorism. On Thursday (14/12), four alleged Hamas members suspected of planning terrorist attacks on European soil were arrested by German and Dutch authorities, Germany’s federal prosecutor said in a statement. On the same day, Danish police also arrested four more suspects of planning terrorist acts.