Belfast Telegraph

Home News World

Two held in Spanish terror raids

Police have neutralised a jihadi terror cell with the arrests of two people who were part of a larger group allegedly planning to carry out attacks in Spain and other European countries, the Spanish interior ministry said.

The latest suspects are Spaniards of Moroccan origin, arrested in Spain's north African enclave of Ceuta. The arrests were connected to the detention of four other suspected members of the same cell on January 24, authorities said.

"The group broken up was fully operative and made up of individuals already radicalised and ready for possibly carrying out attacks in our country or those around us," the ministry statement said.

It gave no concrete details as to how the group was prepared to carry out attacks but said members had access to the weapons black market, adding that a Glock handgun had been confiscated in the January raids.

Police said the six cell members had similar profiles to the two French brothers who killed 12 people in an attack on the Charlie Hebdo newspaper in Paris in January. It gave no further details.

The statement said the cell members were physically and mentally ready for jihadist activity and adopted complex security measures when moving about or communicating.

The ministry said the group followed the directives of the Islamic State armed group via social media networks and jihadist websites.

In January, police arrested four Spanish citizens with Moroccan roots - two pairs of brothers - and seized a pistol, ammunition, military fatigues, face-concealing hoods, machetes, knives and Spanish vehicle licence plates.

A judge ordered three of the suspects should be jailed because they posed a potential threat to the country's security. The fourth was released, but ordered to stay in Spain and report to authorities weekly.

Spain and Morocco have arrested dozens of suspected jihadist militants and recruiters in recent years, especially around Ceuta and Melilla, Spanish cities in North Africa that are surrounded by Morocco on one side and the Mediterranean Sea on the other.

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph