Source: Ministry of Interior
Saturday 22 December 2018
The Spanish National Police arrests foreign terrorist fighter hiding
in Barcelona after fighting for DAESH in Syria
A GUIDEPOST report
Officers from the National Police General Intelligence Commissariat, in collaboration with the Provincial Intelligence Brigade of Barcelona, arrested a dangerous foreign terrorist fighter in Mataró, Barcelona Province, on Friday, 21December, for his alleged membership in DAESH. M.E.M., aged 33, is a Moroccan national.
An International Arrest Warrant issued by Morocco made the arrest possible. The Diréction Général de la Surveillance du Territoire and the National Intelligence Centre collaborated in the operation.
The detainee is an alleged Jihadi fighter who left Morocco in May 2014 to join the ranks of DAESH. According to the investigations, M.E.M. underwent military training for the terrorist group for the purpose of developing a long-range missile base in Syria.
The knowledge acquired at this terrorist group’s training camps in the use of weapons and his extreme radicalism made M.E.M. a real threat capable of carrying out a terrorist action. His training as a Mujahidin allowed him to travel illegally throughout Europe, finally ending up in Spain. He used aliases and, as is characteristic of foreign terrorist fighters, lacked identification that could confirm his true identity, since this tends to be destroyed when arriving in a conflict zone to avoid being recognized as members of DAESH in the event of capture by military forces.
According to the investigations, the detainee had illegally entered Spain in June 2018, and resided in Barcelona in an occupied dwellings so as not to leave any kind of record. However, the officers managed to detect his presence, observing how he adopted security measures in line with his training in his daily movements. For instance, he would habitually retrace his steps and monitor his surroundings through reflections in shop windows of commercial premises and building entrances.
This arrest is framed within the strategy employed by Spain’s General Intelligence Commissariat to continue the fight against Jihadi terrorism beyond the Spanish borders. It is an example of how to tackle this global criminal phenomenon that requires an effort that transcends borders and sound international police cooperation, such as the cooperation that exists between Spain and Morocco.
The operation was run by the Spanish Central Investigation Courts and coordinated by the Public Prosecution Service of the National High Court.
Featured image: Simulation of emergency services in the event of a terrorist attack, Madrid/Nils van der Burg, CC BY-SA2.0
Nacional Police Corp badge/Heralder via Wikipedia, CC BY-SA3.0
Man looking at a shop window/Arthur Osipyan, Unsplash