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Greek police arrest 9 suspected Turkish militants ahead of Erdogan’s visit

Security forces in Greece have arrested nine Turkish nationals in the capital, Athens, as part of an investigation linked to Turkish militant groups.

Greek police announced in a Tuesday statement that eight male and one female Turkish citizens had been arrested in the central Athens neighborhoods of Neos Kosmos and Kallithea in early-morning raids the same day.

According to press reports, Greek security forces raided the apartments of the suspected militants and discovered bomb-making devices.

The suspects are reportedly connected to a leftist militant group outlawed in Turkey.

Details were sketchy. One police official said those arrested were “Afghans and Kurds based on their identity papers. Police found jars containing unspecified explosive material and cables to connect to detonators and laptops.” Other officials said they were Turkish citizens.

One police official confirmed that authorities were probing links to DHKP/C, an outlawed militant group blamed for a wave of terror attacks and bombings across Turkey since 1990.

Yet, another Greek official was cited by the semi-official Athens News Agency as saying that the arrests had not linked to domestic terror groups or extremist militants, describing those in police custody as being natives of Turkey.

The development came just a week ahead of a planned visit to the Greek capital by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on December 7-8.

The suspects arrested in Greece were reportedly being interrogated.