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'Terror smugglers' held in Britain

British police have arrested two suspected terrorists as part of a crackdown on a network alleged to smuggle Islamic fighters into Iraq and Afghanistan.

world Updated: Nov 07, 2007 17:24 IST

British police have arrested two suspected terrorists as part of a crackdown on a network alleged to smuggle Islamic fighters into Iraq and Afghanistan.

The men from Surrey and Manchester are Tunisian and are accused of being part of a North African terrorist group, 11 of whose members are being held in Lombardy, northern Italy.

The group's members have also been arrested in France and the northern Portuguese city of Porto.

The arrests came as European security chiefs on Tuesday outlined plans to tighten legislation across the continent to try and target those who groom young Muslims for terrorism over the Internet.

The European Union is proposing legislation that would make certain actions a criminal offence of "public provocation to commit a terrorist offence".

These would include "the distribution, or otherwise making available of a message to the public with the intent to incite" acts of terrorism.

The offence would carry a minimum jail term across Europe.

Meanwhile, YouTube - the popular video website - was on Tuesday night facing calls to crack down on extremist videos after reports that some contained footage of Islamic fighters with guns and rocket launchers.

Videos had been posted by the British group ASWJ, an offshoot of another organisation that was led by the radical preacher Omar Bakri and is now banned in Britain, the Daily Telegraph disclosed.

Another website, IslamBase, which is registered in Glasgow but uses a Dutch server, is said to carry speeches by radical preachers such as Abu Hamza, Omar Bakri and Abut Qatada.

A YouTube spokesperson said: "We make it easy for users to flag content they believe violates our terms and conditions - and where it does we remove it. We also work with the relevant local legal authorities when it comes to content that may break local laws."