Following a recent RTP report revealing that there are “national and foreign citizens in Lisbon who sympathise with Islamic State” – indeed one young man interviewed said he would like to go to fight for Muslims in Syria – PSP police have foiled an attempt to send an AK47 Kalashnikov from the capital’s Portela airport to the United States.
Details of the detention are sketchy. It appears the rifle was sent with all barrels empty by a sender who claimed the package was destined for his son, but he did not know what was inside it.
The weapon was spotted by staff using x-ray equipment at the airport’s cargo terminal.
The sender has been “identified” say press reports, but it is not clear whether he has been charged with any kind of offence.
The rifle is understood to be in the possession now of Lisbon police.
The news comes just days after RTP’s Sexta ás 9 carried an exposé on the number of ‘illegal’ foreigners who come to Portugal – Lisbon particularly – on false work permits.
One was described as a young man who frequented the capital’s mosque in Mem Moniz, and who told female reporter Sandra Felgueiras interviewing him in the street that he would be more than prepared to travel to Syria for ISIS, but “at the moment, this is not possible”.