Four people have been arrested in Spain in connection with alleged terror offences after one obtained a dark web manual on how to make the Mother of Satan explosive, a weapon previously used in ISIS terror attacks.
Arrests Made Following Dark Web Manual Discovery
The alleged Islamic radicals were detained earlier than planned by detectives after the manual was downloaded on how to manufacture the explosive, which was previously found to be possessed by terrorists behind the 2017 Barcelona terror attack which killed 16 people.
Multiple Arrests Across Spain
The arrests took place in Madrid, Cubelles near Barcelona, and the town of Huetor-Tajar near the southern Spanish city of Granada overnight. Video footage shows the moment police raided several properties across Spain this week, detaining the four individuals, who were all taken into police cars with their faces covered. Officers could be seen removing large boxes of evidence from the homes of the suspects, including one which appeared to contain a large samurai-style sword.
Possible Threat of a Large-Scale Attack
It was reported that the terrorists behind the 2017 Barcelona attack possessed 100kg of TATP, the same explosive used to manufacture the Mother of Satan, in storage. This quantity would have been enough to carry out Europe’s biggest ever terror attack. The same explosive was also used by suicide bombers in the London 7/7 bombings in 2005.
No Concrete Evidence of Specific Targets
At this stage, there is no information pointing to the Spanish detainees being able to obtain the bomb-making ingredients or identify specific targets. However, it is important to note that the arrests were made as a preventative measure due to the increased radicalization of the group in recent weeks.
Police Operation Leads to the Arrest of Four Jihadists Who Intended to Restore the Caliphate of ‘#Al #Andalus‘, #Granada, #Barcelona, and #Madrid, #Spain @policia
Read more: https://t.co/6vbSeu2l8v pic.twitter.com/V8tSn4TkvF
— TRACTerrorism (@TracTerrorism) October 20, 2023
Suspects’ Background and Charges Faced
Local media reported that two of the arrested individuals were Spanish nationals who had recently converted to Islam. Three of the detainees are in their twenties, while the fourth is aged 31. They have all been arrested on suspicion of crimes including the glorification of terrorism. Three of them have been remanded in prison, while the fourth has been released on bail pending further investigation.
Terror Alert Level Raised in Spain
These arrests come after Spain raised its terror alert level to four amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the terror-group Hamas in Gaza. The Spanish National Police stated that the operation began in 2022 after they detected the creator and administrator of several closed social media groups attempting to indoctrinate youngsters into Jihadist ideology.
Collaboration between National and Provincial Agencies
The operation was carried out jointly between the General Intelligence Committee and the Provincial Intelligence Brigades of Granada, Barcelona, and Madrid, with the support of Europol, who have been monitoring the threat of terrorism in the EU on a consistent basis. This collaboration highlights the importance of international cooperation in combating terrorism.
The arrest of four individuals in Spain for possessing a dark web manual on how to make the Mother of Satan explosive is a significant step in preventing potential acts of terror. While there is currently no evidence of concrete plans or specific targets, the arrests serve as a reminder of the ongoing threat posed by radicalization and the importance of vigilant law enforcement efforts. The collaboration between national and provincial agencies, as well as international support, showcases the united front against terrorism.