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Wed 9 Dec 2015 12:42 PM

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Group on trial in the UAE over New Year's Eve plot

41 men set up desert training camp, smuggled explosives and plotted attacks on malls and towers in 2014

Group on trial in the UAE over New Year's Eve plot
Image for illustrative purposes only.

Forty-one men appeared in court in Abu Dhabi chared with setting up an illegal terrorist group, smuggling firearms, ammunition and explosives and plotting to carry out attacks on malls and tourist centres on New Year's Eve 2014, it was reported.

The group, whose nationalities were not revealed, are charged with setting up of a terrorist group called 'Shabab Al Manara' and plotting to carry out a series of terrorist attacks as part of a bid to cause damage to the state, seize power and changing the ruling system by establishing a self-proclaimed 'caliphate' based on the group's extremist ideology and convictions, the state news agency WAM reported on Tuesday.

The men allegedly set up a training camp in the desert, smuggled firearms, ammunition and explosives into the country and raised funds to help finance their terrorist ambitions, the report added.

The group "planned on wrecking malls, centres and towers, one of which was planned to take place on the eve of new year last year, but they were arrested,” prosecutors were quoted as saying by The National newspaper.

The State Security Division of the Federal Supreme Court adjourned the hearing of the case to December 20 and 27, 2015 and January 3, 2016, to allow the lawyers to present their defence.

During its session, public prosecutors asked for the maximum punishment for the defendants.

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