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Azerbaijan: Police Arrest Six In Terror Probe

Baku, 2 January 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Police in Azerbaijan say they have arrested six people affiliated with an Islamic group that is suspected of planning attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Baku and offices of international organizations. There was no immediate word on formal charges against the six.

Azerbaijan's National Security Ministry says the group includes five Azeris and one Ukrainian national who are alleged to be members of a group called "Hizb-ut-Tahrir." The ministry said one Uzbek citizen being sought in their investigation managed to escape.

Hizb-ut-Tahrir is thought to have adherents throughout Central Asia and in the Middle East. The group recently circulated leaflets in Baku that denounced the U.S.-led military strikes in Afghanistan and called for the creation of an Islamic state in Central Asia.