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Singapore soldier linked to Awlaki

SINGAPORE, July 7 (UPI) -- Authorities in Singapore arrested a member of the armed forces who became radicalized after contacting Yemeni cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, officials said.

The government in Singapore said 20-year-old Muhammad Fadil Abdul Hamid, described as a full-time serviceman in the Singapore military, was detained under the authority of internal security legislation, Singapore's The Straits Times reports.

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The soldier allegedly became self-radicalized by browsing militant Islamic sites on the Internet. He was accused of initiating communications with Awlaki and expressed his desire to carry out attacks in the Middle East, Iraq or Afghanistan.

Awlaki is linked to the alleged shooter in the November attacks on Fort Hood, Texas, and the alleged would-be bomber on a passenger jet bound for Detroit on Christmas Day. Washington placed the U.S.-born cleric on its hit list.

"(The soldier) was influenced by the teachings of radical clerics posted online and became convinced that it was his religious duty to undertake armed jihad alongside fellow militants and strive for martyrdom," a government statement read.

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