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Axe attack of individual nature, says German Interior Minister

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Railway Station Cologne, Germany

The axe attack on a German train was carried out by an individual who “felt goaded” by the propaganda of the Islamic State militant group (IS), said German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere on Wednesday.

A video, which was released by the IS on the Internet claiming responsibility for the axe attack, does not contain any evidence of an arrangement with the IS, according to de Maiziere, Xinhua news agency reported him saying.

The 17-year-old refugee Riaz Khan Ahmadzai injured five people near Wuerzburg in the southern German state of Bavaria with a knife and an axe. Most of the victims were Chinese tourists, among whom two were critically wounded.

“It is perhaps a case which lies on the border between rampage and terror,” the German official said.

He condemned the act as a “brutal act of indiscriminate violence,” saying further that “the background of the act must be further clarified.”

Meanwhile, he also called for more video surveillance and police.

German media Spiegel Online reported that police had found a “hand-painted IS flag” in the room of the 17-year-old Afghan.

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Belgian court ends extradition case against Catalan leader Puigdemont

The judge had declared the case to be “without merit” during an in-camera hearing.

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Carles Puigdemont

A Belgian court formally closed extradition proceedings against deposed Catalan separatist leader Carles Puigdemont on Thursday.

Puigdemont and four of his deputies fled to Belgium in October to avoid charges of rebellion, sedition and misusing public money in relation to Catalonia’s independence bid. The Spanish Supreme Court withdrew the European arrest warrants last week.

The judge had declared the case to be “without merit” during an in-camera hearing, Paul Bekaert, Puigdemont’s Belgian lawyer, told AFP.

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Terror plot to assassinate British PM foiled: Report

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Theresa May

London, Dec 6 : British intelligence have reportedly foiled a plot by Islamic extremists to assassinate Prime Minister Theresa May, a media report said.

The disrupted plot against May included an explosive device that terrorists planned to detonate in front of May’s residence on 10 Downing Street, a Sky News report said.

“It is in essence an extreme Islamist suicide plot against Downing Street,” it said.

“Essentially police believe that the plan was to launch some sort of improvised explosive device at Downing Street and in the ensuing chaos attack and kill Theresa May, the Prime Minister,” the news report said.

The plot was just one in a number of planned attacks in 2017 that cops and British security services have been able to prevent, Sky said.

It was not clear on Tuesday night what stage the plot was in or if any suspects have been arrested.

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EU’s Mogherini meets with Tillerson, calls on US to stick with Iran nuclear deal

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File:Rex Tillerson Federica Mogherini 2017-02-09 03

The EU’s top diplomat says Washington’s decision to step away from a landmark nuclear deal would be counterproductive, and insisted that other disputes with Tehran should be tackled in other ways.

Federica Mogherini, who met with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in Brussels on Tuesday, said that the EU attaches great importance to upholding the agreement. Scrapping the deal “would not put us in a better position to discuss all the rest, on the contrary,” Mogherini added.

Tillerson said that “Iran is carrying out a number of other destabilizing activities throughout the region” and called for joint action to counter it, AP reports.

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