Saturday, April 15, 2017

Stockholm Attack: Uzbekistan Says It Warned Of Radicalization Of Akilov

The Uzbek Foreign Minister said on Friday that his country had warned of the radicalization of the main suspect in the attack in Stockholm. Sweden asserts that it has not received this information.

The soap opera of the 7 April attacks in Stockholm, which killed four people and wounded 15, has only just begun. Especially when it comes to determining the responsibilities of each. Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov sought to disengage his country's representatives on Friday (April 14th), claiming to have sought to indirectly prevent Sweden.

"The information on the actions of Rakhmat Akilov was transmitted to one of our Western partners and then informed the Swedish side," he said without indicating to which country this information had been transmitted.

But on the Swedish side, it was asserted that they had received nothing. "The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has not received any such information," said a spokesman for the Swedish diplomacy, Victoria Bell. Such a lack of information raises many questions, as the threat seemed to be identified.

Abdulaziz Kamilov said that his country had placed Rakhmat Akilov on a list of suspected religious extremists. An Uzbek police source also claims that Uzbekistan issued an international arrest warrant in February 2017 against its national after the opening of a judicial investigation for "religious extremism". Contacted by France 24, Interpol has not yet confirmed the existence of the arrest warrant.

Round trip to the Syrian border

Akilov, 39, an Uzbek from the Tajik minority, lives in Sweden since 2014, when he left his country. It is there that he would have radicalized, according to Abdulaziz Kamilov, in contact with a Tajik Islamist cell. He was allegedly "recruited on the Internet by emissaries of the terrorist Islamic state organization" (EI).

The process is fast enough: in 2015, it wants to try to cross the border between Turkey and Syria, in order to "try to take part in the fighting in Syria," according to an Uzbek police source. Rakhmat Akilov was arrested and sent back to Sweden. Where the authorities of the Nordic countries informed of the journey they had on their land? At the moment they have not mentioned it.

Back in Stockholm, Rakhmat Akilov continues to work on construction sites until December 2016, when the Swedish authorities notify him of the rejection of his asylum application, filed in 2014. He is supposed to leave the country within four weeks but not Does not. In February 2017, he was placed on the list of persons wanted by the police, when Uzbekistan said that he had issued the arrest warrant.

An attack justified by non-existent bombing

Two months later, he killed four people by driving a truck in a pedestrian street in central Stockholm. According to the newspaper Expressen, who had access to the transcript of his interrogation by the Swedish police, he said he was "satisfied with what he had done". "I have descended from infidels", he said, would have boasted, according to the newspaper Aftonbladet, and would have advanced as a reason to have "hit Sweden because it strikes his country": "The bombing in Syria must stop. The Independent also reveals that the suspect said the "order" for the attack came directly from the IE in Syria.

Except that Sweden did not bomb Syria or Iraq. At the most, the northern kingdom has sent about thirty military instructors to Syria ... and hundreds of millions of dollars in humanitarian donations. On the very day of the Stockholm attack, Sweden had criticized the American strike against a military base of the Syrian regime. "It is important that such actions are based on international law," said Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström.

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