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In Perm, Russia Tries Suspected Members Of Banned Islamic Group

The trial in the Russian city of Perm has begun of six suspected members of a banned Islamic movement.

Local authorities say the defendants are members of an organization called Nurcular. The seventh member of the group received a suspended one-year term in June.

In May 2013, several alleged members of Nurcular were arrested in Perm, near the Ural mountains east of Moscow; St. Petersburg; and the southern city of Rostov-on-Don.

Nurcular was founded by Turkish Islamic cleric Said Nursi, who died in 1960.

It has been banned in Russia since 2008.

Authorities say it propagates the idea of creating an Islamic state on lands where indigenous peoples speak Turkic languages.

Based on reporting by and Interfax