Rabat – An individual of Moroccan origin allegedly involved in the Spain attacks , which caused the death of 16 people in August, was arrested on Friday, the Moroccan press agency MAP has reported.
The suspected terrorist was arrested by officers from the Spanish Guardia Civil in Vinaros, a municipality in the province of Valencia on the east coast of Spain.
The suspect, aged 24, allegedly helped the terrorist cell carry out the attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils on August 17 and 18, said the Spanish Ministry of Interior. The arrested individual is said to have entertained a close relationship with the cell’s suspected mastermind, Abdelbaki Es Satti.
The Spanish interior ministry affirmed that the man in question might have used his identification card to buy hydrogen peroxide, a substance used to make triacetone triperoxide (TATP), an explosive described as “easy to make” by combining several ingredients.
The suspect is also believed to have helped the other attackers transport the explosive substances.
Spanish investigators are gathering information about the terrorist cell’s activities and preparations prior to the attacks. The Guardia Civil is also investigating the links between members of the cell and other radical elements in Spain and abroad.
Meanwhile, the Spanish Interior revealed that 246 suspected terrorists have been arrested since early 2015. Some of those arrests were conducted by local police in collaboration with security forces from other countries.
In addition to its European security partners such as France and Belgium, the Spain attacks further strenghtened Madrid’s belief in boosting security cooperation with Morocco.
A high Spanish security delegation visited Morocco in August to meet discuss bilateral cooperation.
In a recent interview with the Associated Press Abdelhak El Khiam, the head of Morocco’s Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations (BCIJ), the local anti-terrorism agency, vowed to double efforts to counter radicalization among Moroccan diaspora.