French counterterrorism police arrested nine suspects in a pre-dawn sweep on Wednesday aimed at breaking up an alleged al-Qaida-linked recruiting network to send radical Islamic fighters to Iraq, the Interior Ministry said.
The nine were all from southwestern France. Two of the suspects were arrested at Orly airport in Paris after returning from abroad, the ministry said in a statement, without saying where they had come from or where the others had been taken into custody.
The arrests followed months of intelligence gathering about the suspected network, the ministry said. An investigation was continuing.