Morocco’s counter-terrorism units dismantled the cell just a few days before the intended attacks.
Rabat – The Central Bureau of Judicial Investigation (BCIJ) located on Sunday, October 27 a region in the province of Ouazzane in northern Morocco. Members of the recently dismantled terror cell were planning to hide at the site after carrying out terror attacks in several regions of Morocco.
The region is located on the heights of Brichka, a rural area in the province of Ouazzane.
The BCIJ staff took three suspects to the site as part of the ongoing investigation. The BCIJ dismantled a seven-member cell on Friday, October 27 in different regions.
The security forces arrested some suspects in Dar Bouazza, a coastal town in the Casablanca-Settat region, in addition to other suspects in Ouazzane, and Chefchaouen.
The suspects were plotting attacks in both Casablanca and Ouazzane a few days ahead of their arrest.
The mastermind of the dismantled ISIS-linked cell as well as two members recorded two videos to pledge allegiance to the leader of ISIS Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. In the footage they threaten to commit terror operations in Morocco and to proclaim a “province affiliated the terrorist organization under the name the “Daech Wilaya in the Islamic Maghreb,” 2M reported.
The dismantling of the terror cell comes a few days after US President Donald Trump announced the death of the ISIS leader al Baghdadi in a US-led raid in Idlib, Syria.
Trump said that DNA tests confirmed that the man who died in a tunnel on Saturday, October 26 was al Baghdadi.
The US president said that the ISIS leader spent his last moments in fear and frustration.
On Sunday, October 27, spokesman of the General Directorate of National Security (DGSN), Boubker Sabik, said that the cell was preparing to release a video after their plotted attacks in several sensitive places across Morocco to spread fear.
Sabik, who spoke to 2M last night, commented on the location chosen by the cell to hide after the attacks.
He said that the cell chooses the location “because it is known for its rough terrain that are difficult to access.”
“On the other hand, [ the region was selected] due to living conditions that are available because of its proximity to a valley,” he added.
The DGSN’s spokesperson emphasized that the region is difficult to identify using geo-coordinates.
Morocco’s security forces, including the BCIJ, have a good reputation at the international level.
The 2018 Country Reports on Terrorism by the US Department of State emphasized that Morocco has a “comprehensive counterterrorism strategy that includes vigilant security measures, regional and international cooperation.”