Thursday, 28th June 2012
Melilla arrests of alleged jihadist recruiters
Spanish police in Melilla arrested two men accused of recruiting youngsters for jihad in foreign countries and of torturing and murdering two others who changed their minds.
The two men are Spanish nationals of Moroccan origin and are said to head a group with international connections.
They are accused of torturing and killing two members of the group whose bodies were found in July 2008 in the Moroccan city of Nador.
“The victims had adopted western or ‘infidel’ behaviour and had decided to separate themselves from the group,” said Spain’s Ministry of the Interior in a statement yesterday.
Rachid Abdellah Mohamed, 25, and Nabil Mohamed Chaib, 30, were arrested by police officers investigating Islamic terror networks.
They are alleged to have recruited young men to train them and send them to fight in Muslim conflict zones.
The arrests follow reports at the weekend revealing that a Spanish national of Moroccan origin resident in Ceuta had been killed fighting in Syria.
The group run by the two detained men is alleged to have included Spanish nationals of Moroccan origin resident in Melilla and also residents of the Moroccan town of Farhana, according to the Spanish ministry.
The group adopted strict security measures to avoid detection and its members broke off all contact with family and friends.
The authorities in Morocco issued international arrest warrants for Rachid Abdellah Mohamed and Nabil Mohamed Chaib, who have been on the run “in various European countries” since then.
Yesterday, law enforcement officers finally caught up with them in Melilla.