Far-right terror plot suspects are serving British soldiers

Four alleged members of the banned neo-Nazi group National Action are being held in the Midlands

British army soldier
(Image credit: Iklas Hallen/AFP/Getty Images)

The Army has confirmed that four serving soldiers have been arrested on suspicion of preparing acts of terrorism and membership of a banned neo-Nazi group.

The men – a 22-year-old from Birmingham, a 32-year-old from Powys, a 24-year-old from Ipswich and a 24-year-old from Northampton – are being held by civilian police in the West Midlands while police search properties associated with them.

The suspects are alleged to be members of the far-right group National Action, which was banned by Home Secretary Amber Rudd last year.

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An Army spokesperson said: "We can confirm that a number of serving members of the Army have been arrested under the Terrorism Act for being associated with a proscribed far-right group.

"These arrests are the consequence of a Home Office police force-led operation supported by the Army. This is now the subject of a civilian police investigation and it would be inappropriate to comment further."

Police said the arrests were pre-planned and there had been no threat to public safety.

Jo Cox MP murder link

National Action "endorsed" the murder of Jo Cox MP by far-right loner Thomas Mair during last year's general election campaign, reports the Daily Mail.

After her death, the extremist group tweeted: "Don't let this man's sacrifice go in vain. #JoCox would have filled Yorkshire with more subhumans."

The Mail reports that the only statement Mair made in court when he was tried for shooting and stabbing the 41-year-old Labour MP – "Death to to traitors; freedom for Britain" – appeared as a slogan on National Action's former website.

'Youth organisation'

The group called itself a "National Socialist youth organisation", in reference to Adolf Hitler's Nazi Party, and said it aimed to heal the "broken right-wing". Rudd described it as a "racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic organisation" when she added it to the register of proscribed groups last year.

According to the register, National Action was set up in 2013 and had branches across the UK recruiting young people to "conduct provocative street demonstrations and stunts aimed at intimidating local communities".

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