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The fight against terrorism

Spanish National Police Force and Directorate-General for National Security of the Kingdom of Morocco break up Jihadi terrorist cell comprising six individuals

Wednesday 6 September 2017
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Ministerio del Interior

In coordination with members of the Directorate-General for Surveillance of the Territory of the Kingdom of Morocco, officers of the General Commissariat of Intelligence of the Spanish National Police Force and the Provincial Intelligence Brigade of Melilla broke up a Jihadi terrorist cell comprising six individuals on Wednesday, of which two resided in Melilla and four in Morocco.

​Five of those arrested are of Moroccan nationality (one with legal residence in Spain) and the sixth individual arrested is of Spanish nationality and Moroccan origin.

The cell's leader - residing in Melilla - recruited and indoctrinated new members by following the global strategy adopted by the terrorist organisation DAESH. His job as a teacher's assistant at a juvenile rehabilitation centre enabled him to recruit and radicalise new members from among these particularly vulnerable young people.

According to sources close to the investigation, he was able to effectively conclude his recruitment activity during this period by building the terrorist cell that was broken up on Wednesday morning, the imminent purpose of which was to undertake a violent Jihad with a dangerous level of activity.

The investigation conducted by the Spanish National Police Force and the Directorate-General for Surveillance of the Territory of the Kingdom of Morocco (DGST) discovered that the group was holding clandestine nocturnal meetings, at which they were planning sizeable terrorist attacks. Furthermore, they observed physical training sessions that even included assassination simulations using decapitation.

This joint operation highlights the excellent collaboration that exists between the Spanish National Police Force and the Directorate-General for Surveillance of the Territory of the Kingdom of Morocco, which has once again led to the neutralisation of a dangerous threat to both countries.

The operation, which is ongoing, was carried out by Central Investigation Court Number 5, in coordination with the Public Prosecutor's Office of the Spanish National High Court.

Since 26 June 2015, the year in which the Spanish Ministry of Home Affairs raised the Counter-Terrorism Alert Level to level 4 (Spanish acronym: NAA), the law enforcement agencies have arrested a total of 199 Jihadi terrorists in operations carried out in Spain and abroad and a total of 244 since the start of 2015.

The Ministry of Home Affairs sends out a reminder that, through the initiative STOP RADICALISMOS, citizens can collaborate through a series of channels open to them so that, in a confidential and secure manner, they can notify the State law enforcement agencies of possible cases of radicalisation in their surroundings through the web page www.stop-radicalismos.es, the mobile phone app for citizen security alerts Alertcops and the free hotline 900 822 066.

Non official translation