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Expelled Moroccans 'wanted to kill pope'

Perugia student 'ready to earn place in Paradise', weekly says

13 May, 16:22
Expelled Moroccans 'wanted to kill pope' (ANSA) - Rome, May 13 - Two Moroccan students expelled from Italy for security reasons last month wanted to kill Pope Benedict XVI, an Italian newsweekly claims in a report coming out Friday.

The Panorama weekly says it has obtained a copy of the expulsion order in which one of the pair, Mohamed Hlal, was allegedly quoted in a police wiretap saying he was "ready to assassinate (the pope) to earn a place in Paradise".

After the April 29 order against Hlal and his fellow Perugia University student Ahmed Errahmouni, an interior ministry statement suggested that the pair were planning suicide-bomb attacks, but gave no details.

At the time, Maroni said the pair had been linked to jihadi groups, had been taped talking about terrorist activities and were feared set to carry out "extremist" acts.

Hlal, 27, was studying international communications at the Umbria hilltown university which has a large population of foreign students.

Errahmouni, 22, was enrolled at the faculty of mathematics and physics.

The men are living freely in Rabat, Panorama said.

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