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Security Two terror suspects arrested during WEF meeting

Security forces were on heightened alert during the 2017 WEF annual meeting in Davos

(Keystone)

Two people suspected of links to terror groups were arrested during the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting in Davos last week but were later released by a local court, it has been confirmed.

Details are still sketchy regarding reports concerning the arrests of the two individuals during the WEF meeting from January 17-20 in the resort of Davos, canton Graubünden, which attracts leaders, CEOs and bankers.

However, a spokesman for the canton’s public prosecutor confirmed a report on Tuesday by the regional Südostschweiz newspaper that the arrests were made in agreement and close collaboration with the Swiss Attorney General’s Office.

The two people were arrested based on suspicion of violation of a law prohibiting groups such as al-Qaeda and Islamic State. Owing to the ongoing investigation, the cantonal public prosecutor’s office refused to give any further information on where the two people were arrested or their identity, including sex or place of origin.

It has been confirmed, however, that following their arrest the two people were subsequently released after a Chur court refused a request for them to be held in custody. The Swiss Attorney General’s Office, confirmed this information while refusing to give any further details.

The annual WEF gathering in Davos entails a huge security operation. This includes officers from the Federal Office of Police, the Swiss Intelligence Service, the border police, the local police force, and members of foreign intelligence services. In addition, up to 5,000 army troops were on standby to perform a range of tasks, including collecting and communicating relevant information.

Besides providing general security, Switzerland also provides personal protection for almost 100 high-ranking politicians.

In an interview ahead of the 2017 WEF meeting, Graubünden’s police chief said investigative activities and inspections had been stepped up in Davos in view of the challenging security situation in Europe and terror threats.  

Around 70 criminal cases are currently underway in Switzerland against people suspected of violating the law prohibiting groups such as al-Qaeda and Islamic State.

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