MOSCOW, November 27 (RIA Novosti) – Russian police said Wednesday they have detained a group of people presumed to be members of a banned radical Islamist sect carrying ammunition and an explosive suicide belt.
The alleged 14 Takfir wal-Hijra operatives were detained Tuesday night in eastern Moscow during a special operation by police and security service forces, officials said.
Police said they located three homemade explosives, pistols, grenades, ammunition and extremist literature at the site of the raid.
One of the explosive devices was rigged to act as a suicide belt, police said.
Officials reported later Wednesday that another alleged member of Takfir wal-Hijra was detained separately in Moscow. It was not immediately clear whether he was connected to the sect members held earlier.
Takfir wal-Hijra is a pan-Islamic religious sect that is believed to have emerged in Egypt some time in the 1970s or 1980s. It is active in numerous Middle Eastern states, including Syria and Lebanon.
It was designated as an extremist organization and banned in Russia in 2010.
Earlier this month, police reported detaining another member of the group outside Moscow while he was seeking to recruit young girls to the organization.