Morocco’s Central Bureau of Judicial Investigation (BCIJ) has dismantled a terrorist cell linked to the so-called Islamic State, better known as ISIS, in Fez and Moulay Yacoub, a town located northwest of Fez, Ministry of Interior said in a communique, according to moroccoworldnews.com
The ministry said that investigations show the cell, which includes seven members, is associated to another, previous dismantled cell that had been supporting ISIS by recruiting members to join their ranks.
The BCIJ has dismantled the cell in the possession of white weapons, military equipment and money.
According to the preliminary investigation, the members of this cell had accelerated their activities, specifically attracting and referring a group of Moroccan volunteers to the Syrian-Iraqi arena in coordination with ISIS’ elements, who then directed the external operations, the ministry added.
The preliminary investigation found that the cell’s members had intensified their activities, in coordination with ISIS operatives on the ground. They were tasked with attracting and then sending a volunteer group of Moroccan sympathizers to join ISIS in Iraq and Syria, where they would receive military training, the ministry said.
The same source went to add that the leader of this cell had recently funded three extremist Moroccans to join ISIS to obtain fighting experience.
The ministry said that a brother of one of the cell’s members had already been involved in a previously dismantled cell. He was convicted for planning to carry out acts of sabotage in the Kingdom and Europe. It added that the rest of the cell’s members all have relatives fighting in the ranks of ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
According to the ministry, the suspects will appear in court as soon as the ongoing investigation of the public prosecutor ends. It added that the dismantling of this cell is part of a larger effort being undertaken by Moroccan security services to counter growing terrorist threats.