Rabat, Feb 18 (IANS) Morocco’s interior ministry said on Thursday that security services have foiled a “dangerous” Islamic State terrorist attack and arrested 10 suspects, including a French national.
A terrorist cell directed by IS leaders was about to carry out a suicide car bomb attack, before authorities acted on “precise tip-offs,” the ministry said in a statement, Xinhua reported.
The cell also planned to recruit more extremists and launch a guerrilla war, the statement said.
The mastermind of the cell was arrested inside a “safe house” in the city of El Jadida, about 190 km southwest of Rabat, and a considerable amount of weapons and ammunition were seized, the statement said.
Authorities seized four machine guns, three revolvers, an automatic pistol, a rifle, and 13 teargas canisters.
During the operation, the police also seized four expandable batons, an electric Taser, six plastic bottles containing chemicals which could be used to make explosives, an IS flag, in addition to bladed weapons and military uniforms, according to the statement.
The investigations revealed that the group had recruited a teenager to carry out a suicide car bomb attack, and was planning to recruit more teenagers.
The dismantlement of the cell comes amid growing threats from IS Moroccan fighters to undermine the country’s security and stability.
The ministry said it has busted 31 terrorist cells since 2013 and foiled “numerous terrorist plans” targeting vital national, Arab and Western interests.