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9 Albanian Muslims remain in jail on ties with terror groups

TIRANA, Albania — An Albanian appeals court has left in prison nine Muslims accused of inciting terror, recruiting and sending more than 70 men to fight with rebel groups in Syria.

Tirana's Appeals Serious Crime Court on Wednesday did not change the jail terms ordered in May from the district court of 13 to 18 years for four of the prisoners but slightly reduced the prison terms for the five others.

They operated in two mosques that were not recognized by the country's Muslim community.

About two-thirds of Albania's three million people are Muslims. Mainstream religious leaders have urged believers not to join rebel groups in Syria and Iraq but scores of Albanians are believed to have joined Islamic extremist groups there.

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