Tuesday, October 5, 2010


PARIS (AFP) - Police arrested nine people and seized guns and ammunition in southern France in anti-terrorism raids, sources close to the investigations said on Tuesday.

Police made the arrests on Tuesday morning in the southern port city of Marseille and the nearby town of Avignon, the sources told AFP.

They seized "some weapons, including a Kalashnikov (rifle) and a pump-action shotgun, as well as ammunition," said one official close to the investigation.

In a separate operation also on Tuesday, French police arrested three men after finding their numbers in the mobile phone of a man of Algerian origin who was arrested at the weekend in Italy allegedly with a bomb-making kit.

Two of those suspects were arrested in the southern city of Marseille and the third in Bordeaux in the southwest, said a police source. Officials stressed that the two sets of arrests were not linked.

In the second raid, the three men's phone numbers were found in the phone of Ryad Hannouni, who was picked up Saturday close to the central train station in the Italian city of Naples allegedly carrying a bomb-making kit.

The 28-year-old, for whom a European arrest warrant had been issued, was to be extradited to France, ANSA news agency said.

The US State Department issued a travel advisory Sunday telling Americans in Europe to remain vigilant of possible terror strikes, and several other countries followed suit with similar warnings.