Mobile  |  About us  |  Photos  |  Videos  |  Subscriptions  |  RSS Feeds  |  Today's Paper  |  Classifieds  |  Contact Us
The Daily Star
WEDNESDAY, 23 APR 2014
11:58 PM Beirut time
Weather    
Beirut
22 °C
Blom Index
BLOM
1,214.01down
International
Follow this story Print RSS Feed ePaper share this
Bulgaria charges 13 with illegal Islamist activities
Agence France Presse
A+ A-

SOFIA: Thirteen Bulgarian men of the ethnic Turkish minority were charged with illegal Islamist activities on Monday, the prosecution announced.

The men are suspected of "setting up or participating in a local branch of the Saudi-based Al Waqf-Al Islami foundation", the prosecution said in a statement.

The radical Muslim group was active between March 2008 and October 2010 in the southern regions of Smolyan, Blagoevgrad and Pazardzhik, where it was "preaching anti-democratic ideology", it added.

The group's mastermind -- identified as Said Mehmet Mutlu -- and two of his accomplices also face charges of preaching the Salafite ideology of militant extremist Sunnis as well as being proponents of a Sharia law state.

A third count -- spreading religious hatred in Friday prayers at mosques, lectures, in sermons and other meetings was also added, prosecutors said.

If found guilty, they risk up to 12 years in prison, while their 10 other accomplices may be jailed for up to 10 years.

One of the men, Ahmet Ahmet, was once found guilty of spreading the radical Salafite ideology and given a three-year suspended sentence with a five-year probation period, the prosecution said.

About 13 percent of Bulgaria's population of 7.4 million are Muslims.

They come mainly from the country's 10-percent minority of ethnic Turks, plus smaller groups of Romas and the so-called Pomaks, Christians converted to Islam during Bulgaria's five-century Turkish domination.

A WikiLeaks cable published in July 2011 said the minority was very susceptible to extremist preachings due to its pervasive poverty, massive unemployment and widespread discrimination.

The graph, compiled in October 2005 by the US ambassador to Bulgaria at the time John Beyrle, said Muslim extremism was a real threat in the country where religious rights institutions were not vigilant enough.

 
Home International
 
     
 
Bulgaria
Advertisement
Comments  

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement


Baabda 2014
Advertisement
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Linked In Follow us on Google+ Subscribe to our Live Feed
Multimedia
Images  
Pictures of the day
A selection of images from around the world- Wednesday, April 23, 2014
View all view all
Advertisement
Rami G. Khouri
Rami G. Khouri
Israel shows Zionism’s true colors
Michael Young
Michael Young
Why confuse gibberish with knowledge?
David Ignatius
David Ignatius
Echoes of 1914 characterize the Ukraine crisis
View all view all
Advertisement
cartoon
 
Click to View Articles
 
 
News
Business
Opinion
Sports
Culture
Technology
Entertainment
Privacy Policy | Anti-Spamming Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright Notice
© 2014 The Daily Star - All Rights Reserved - Designed and Developed By IDS