Morocco arrests suspected Daesh member in Dakhla

Morocco arrests suspected Daesh member in Dakhla

Morocco continues to wage a fierce fight against terrorism. The Kingdom’s efforts to stamp out any hint of a threat are growing. On this occasion, the swift action of the Moroccan Directorate of Territorial Surveillance (DGST) prevented what could have been another attack on Morocco’s security. Moroccan security services arrested a 23-year-old man suspected of being affiliated with the Daesh terrorist group.

The arrested man, originally from El Hajeb, a town near Fez, “swore allegiance to the leader of ISIS and actively participated in the preparation of terrorist plans”, according to the statement issued by the DGST. The operation was carried out by the DGST itself, in collaboration with the security services operating in Dakhla. The investigation will now be carried out by the Central Bureau of Judicial Investigations (BCIJ), which will try to clarify the “nature of the plots” and even identify possible collaborators both in Morocco and abroad.

The DGST communiqué also warns of the growing terrorist threat surrounding Morocco. More and more people are being captivated by extremist ideas that threaten the country’s security, leading to increased measures by Moroccan forces to, as on this occasion, anticipate possible attacks. In fact, several reports show the Kingdom’s growing effectiveness in preventing terrorism.

Among this series of actions, the one carried out last month when the BCIJ managed to dismantle a Daesh cell stands out. Four suspects aged between 25 and 32 were arrested for allegedly preparing terrorist attacks. The DGST reported that the operations linked to this investigation “focused on suspects based in Tangiers, Tetouan and Inezgane Ait Melloul”. During the search of their homes, electronic equipment, knives and documents related to Daesh extremist ideology were found.

Morocco intends to step up its efforts to stamp out terrorism, which, as a result of an increasingly unstable context, is growing in much of the region. Another example is the Polisario Front, whose constant attacks are threatening the security of the Kingdom. To this end, Rabat has sought to extend anti-terrorist cooperation with Mauritania, which the Polisario Front has used on numerous occasions to enter Moroccan territory clandestinely.

Just a few weeks ago, Morocco and Mauritania reinforced their military cooperation with the aim of protecting themselves against the growing terrorist threat. Lieutenant General Mohamed Bariz, Inspector General of the Royal Moroccan Armed Forces, met with his Mauritanian counterpart, the Commander of the General Staff of the Armed Forces, Lieutenant General Mokhtar Bellah Chaabane. The meeting was conditioned by the recent Polisario Front bombardment of the Moroccan town of Smara.

The intention of both countries is to extend the “cooperation agreements in the fight against terrorism, as well as to combat organised crime, criminal gangs, drug and arms trafficking”, based on the Memorandum of Understanding that gave rise to the Mauritanian-Moroccan Joint Military Committee. The current situation in the region makes it necessary to seek new ways of dealing with the terrorist threat in order to anticipate possible attacks, as has been achieved on this occasion with the arrest of the alleged jihadist in Dakhla.

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