DThree young people from North Rhine-Westphalia aged 15 and 16 are in custody on suspicion of terrorism. The Düsseldorf District Court had already issued arrest warrants against them on the Easter weekend at the request of the Central Office for the Prosecution of Terrorism (ZenTer NRW), the Düsseldorf Public Prosecutor's Office announced on Friday. The accused are strongly suspected of having planned an Islamist-motivated terrorist attack.

According to the information, those arrested are a 15-year-old girl from Düsseldorf, a 15-year-old teenager from the Märkischer district and a 16-year-old girl from the Soest district. According to investigators, they are said to have agreed to commit a crime – murder and manslaughter – in conjunction with the preparation of a serious act of violence that would endanger the state. The presumption of innocence applies in all stages of the procedure.

Security sources said that the young people had formed a chat group. There is said to have been no concrete attack plan with a time and place. But the investigators “definitely saw the danger.” There were also searches.

According to the newspaper “Bild”, the state security in Hagen tracked down the young accused. The young people are said to have glorified the jihadist militia “Islamic State” (IS). Their goal was to attack Christians in churches and police officers in police stations with knives and Molotov cocktails, the report continued.

It was only in November that two 15 and 16-year-old teenagers were arrested on suspicion of terrorism. They were said to have sympathized with the so-called “Islamic State” and planned a Christmas market attack with a vehicle. They were taken into custody in North Rhine-Westphalia and Brandenburg. No fuel was found during searches. But there was a “very concrete thought model” for planning the crime, the public prosecutor’s office said at the time.