Spain collaborates with Morocco in terror suspect's arrest

Spanish National Intelligence Centre, Morocco’s General Directorate of Territorial Surveillance carry out joint operation that has led to arrest of terror suspect with links to IS near Madrid.

RABAT - Spain’s security forces arrested on Saturday a suspected terrorist of Moroccan nationality in Guadalix de la Sierra, near Madrid for his alleged participation in the crimes of membership in a terror organisation, indoctrination and self-training.

The anti-terror operation was carried out jointly by Morocco’s General Directorate of Territorial Surveillance (DGST) and the Spanish National Intelligence Centre (CNI), the Spanish National Police said in a statement.

“According to the investigation, the suspect made intensive use of social networks in order to view and disseminate information with jihadist content," it added.

After monitoring his activities, Spanish security services revealed that the individual had embraced the Islamic State group’s virtual strategy, by adopting the terrorist organisation's postulates through a process of self-indoctrination and mass dissemination of their contents on the Internet.

The suspect also possessed several jihadist documents, including videos of training in military camps and testimonies of martyrs," said the Spanish police.

He took scrupulous security measures to avoid detection by the police through using several fake profiles on highly confidential social networks and instant messaging platforms, which allowed him to be in direct contact with IS terrorists in the battlefields in Syria, it said.

The suspect, who left his job to devote himself entirely to the consolidation of his training, dissemination and indoctrination activities, had made public his IS membership, presenting himself as a "son of the Islamic State".

Threats made by the suspect on social networks against Spain and other countries precipitated his arrest, thereby neutralizing the "serious threat he posed to national security," the statement concluded.

The joint anti-terror operation came almost two months after Spanish police dismantled a terrorist cell in Melilla and Mogan (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria) with the cooperation of Morocco’s DGST.

Morocco actively cooperates with international partners including Spain, France and the United States in the fight against terrorism.