Skip to comments.Italy Probes Possible al-Qaida Link
Posted on 07/29/2002 4:26:29 PM PDT by knighthawk
ROME (AP) Italian police are trying to learn if a document-forging operation in Turin served as a logistical base for al-Qaida, authorities said Monday.
The document center, an apartment in a Turin neighborhood populated by many illegal immigrants, was raided in December, said Luciano Nigro, a Turin police precinct chief, and investigation into its operations have been going on since.
On Monday, La Stampa, a Turin daily, reported that police believe the place furnished documents for recruits for al-Qaida, Osama bin Laden's terrorist network.
``I don't have proof,'' Nigro told The Associated Press, but ``we are investigating.''
Nigro said police had arrested two Moroccan sisters, with counterfeit money and falsfied documents, who were in the apartment in December. He said the Moroccan boyfriend of one of the sisters had eluded police.
The police official described the apartment as a ``workshop for false documents.'' Dozens of blank identification cards and false residency permits were seized, as well as a printer and typewriters.
Nigro declined to give other details. La Stampa said forged passports and IDs from Morocco and other Arab nations were found.
Italy has emerged in investigations over the last two years as an important logistical base for al-Qaida, bin Laden's terror network. Seven Tunisians were tried and convicted in Milan earlier this year for providing documents and other logistical support to al-Qaida recruits. Another four North Africans have been indicted on the same charges.
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