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Morocco Dismantles Terror Cell Operating in Nador and Melilia, Suspected of Links to So-called ‘ISIS’

The Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations (BCIJ) under the General Directorate of Territorial Surveillance (DGST) has managed this Tuesday morning, in a joint and simultaneous security operation with the General Commissariat of Intelligence of the Spanish National Police, to dismantle a terrorist cell operating in Nador and Melilia, suspected of links to the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS) organization.

The security interventions conducted by the elements of the Special Force of the DGST have led to the arrest of two individuals in the city of Nador, while the competent Spanish authorities apprehended nine other members active in the same terrorist cell in the city of Melilia, said the BCIJ in a statement.

The searches resulted in the seizure of computer equipment in the form of cell phones, SIM cards, a computer and digital media, which will be subjected to the necessary digital expertise.

This joint security operation was conducted within the framework of distinguished cooperation relations between the Moroccan security services and their Spanish counterparts, a cooperation that stems from the common desire to strengthen the mechanisms of the fight against terrorism and extremism, and the shared concern to neutralize all the risks and threats that threaten the security and safety of the two countries, said the same source.

According to the preliminary data of the investigation, the members of this terrorist cell were promoting extremist ideology through the dissemination of speeches and digital content via computer systems or direct communication, in order to recruit and enlist people to join terror organizations.

The suspects were also intensely disseminating extremist rhetoric that incited people to join terrorist organizations, according to the statement.

The investigations revealed that the so-called emir of this terrorist cell had links with the cell dismantled in December 2019 in the suburbs of Madrid and the city of Nador, as part of a joint operation conducted at the time by the services of the DGST and their Spanish counterparts.

The two members of this terrorist cell arrested in Nador and aged 34 and 39 years have been placed in custody to complete the judicial investigation conducted under the supervision of the prosecutor’s office in charge of terrorism and extremism, while the competent Spanish authorities will be responsible for conducting searches and investigations on the rest of the members of this terror cell who were arrested.

This joint security operation illustrates, once again, the importance of cooperation between the Moroccan security services and their Spanish peers, and also demonstrates the need for security coordination to neutralize the intersections and links between terrorist cells that threaten the security of both countries, the statement concluded.

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