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Extradited Tunisian Admits Links to Berlin Attacker | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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This file photo taken on March 19, 2015 shows a member of the Tunisian security forces standing guard as journalists gather at the visitors entrance of the National Bardo Museum in Tunis. Fethi Belaid / AFP

Tunis- A Tunisian man, who was extradited by Germany to Tunisia, has admitted to having links with the slain suspect of the deadly Christmas market attack in Berlin.

Anis Amri rammed a truck into the crowded market in Berlin on December 19, killing 12 people, before being shot dead four days later by police in Italy.

But the extradited 36-year-old, whose identity was not revealed, denied that he was aware about Amri’s plots and that he belonged to Abu al-Barra terrorist group.

The organization is active in Germany and has around 20 members, including Tunisians.

Tunisian prosecution spokesman Sofiene Sliti said that the authorities in Tunis put the extradited man in jail on Wednesday and opened a judicial investigation over his ties with Amri, who also belonged to Abu al-Barra group.

Sliti revealed that the Tunisian authorities are also investigating the suspect’s ties with the 2015 terrorist attack on the Bardo Museum in Tunis that left 21 foreign tourists and a police officer dead.

In Germany, the Tunisian national is suspected of being a recruiter for ISIS and building a network of supporters to carry out an attack in the country, Alexander Badle, a spokesman for the Frankfurt prosecutor’s office said this week.

The suspect arrived in Germany as an asylum seeker in August 2015, the prosecutors said, after already living in the country for a decade some years earlier.

He was arrested the following August on an outstanding 2008 conviction for causing bodily harm.

After serving a 43-day sentence, he was kept in detention awaiting deportation to Tunisia before the authorities were forced to release him again.

“As the Tunisian authorities, despite repeated reminders from the German authorities, failed to supply the necessary deportation documents within the 40-day period, the suspect was released on November 4, 2016,” the statement said.

He was kept under surveillance from the day of his release until his arrest last Wednesday, it added.