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AFP: Spain terror suspects arrive in Madrid court

AFP: Spain terror suspects arrive in Madrid court

22 August 2017 | 10:03 | FOCUS News Agency
Madrid. Four men suspected of involvement in the terror cell that carried out twin attacks in Spain arrived in a Madrid court Tuesday, an AFP journalist said, where they could be charged, AFP reported.
Under heavy security, police vans entered the National Court, which deals with terrorism cases, where a judge will question them and decide what - if any - charges to press against them over the vehicle attacks that left 15 dead and 120 injured.

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AFP: Death toll in Spain attacks rises to 15

AFP: Death toll in Spain attacks rises to 15

21 August 2017 | 14:55 | FOCUS News Agency
Barcelona. The death toll in Spain's terror attacks has risen to 15, Catalonia's regional minister Joaquim Forn told reporters on Monday, as a victim found stabbed dead in a car in Barcelona was linked to the case, AFP reported.
"We are raising the number of victims from 14 to 15 to include the victim in the vehicle found in Sant Just," he told journalists.

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AFP: Spanish police say driver of Barcelona rampage van identified

AFP: Spanish police say driver of Barcelona rampage van identified

21 August 2017 | 10:41 | FOCUS News Agency
Barcelona. Spanish police said Monday that they had identified the driver of the van that mowed down pedestrians on the busy Las Ramblas boulevard in Barcelona, killing 13, AFP reported.
Police in Catalonia announced the identification on Twitter, without giving his name. But Catalonia's regional interior minister Joaquim Forn told local radio that "everything suggests the van driver is Younes Abouyaaqoub".
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Reuters: Police say cannot rule out that suspect in Barcelona attacks may have crossed to France

Reuters: Police say cannot rule out that suspect in Barcelona attacks may have crossed to France

20 August 2017 | 14:42 | FOCUS News Agency
BARCELONA. The chief of police in Catalonia said on Sunday he could not rule out that the last suspect still believed to be at large in the Barcelona attacks may have crossed to France, Reuters reports.

"We don't have any specific information on this but it cannot be ruled out," Josep Lluis Trapero told a news conference in Barcelona, adding that border checks had been reinforced immediately after the attacks.

Trapero also said he could not confirm who was the driver of the van that killed 13 people in Barcelona.
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Reuters: Police says one man still sought after Barcelona attacks

Reuters: Police says one man still sought after Barcelona attacks

20 August 2017 | 13:14 | FOCUS News Agency
MADRID. The Catalonia police on Sunday said investigators were still working on the hypothesis of 12 suspects in the Barcelona attacks that took place on Thursday and that one man was still sought, Reuters reports.

Speaking to local radio, spokesman Albert Oliva said this man was Moroccan-born 22-year-old Younes Abouyaaqoub.

He also said he could not confirm whether more than one person had died in a house blast in the town of Alcanar on Wednesday.

"It could be one, two or three," Oliva said.
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The Times of Israel: BDS movement accuses Europe for Barcelona terror attack

The Times of Israel: BDS movement accuses Europe for Barcelona terror attack

20 August 2017 | 04:08 | FOCUS News Agency
Sofia. Catalonia’s branch of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel suggested that European governments are “responsible” for a terrorist attack in the Barcelona area, The Times of Israel reports.

BDS Catalonia made the accusation on Friday, a day after the Islamic State terrorist group said its militants killed in the Spanish region 14 people and wounded another 100 in two incidents in and near its capital, Barcelona.

Following a paragraph that states that BDS Catalonia “wishes to condemn the attacks committed” and to “express solidarity with the victims and their relatives,” the statement asserts that “we also condemn the responsibility of European governments in what they are doing with their foreign and domestic policies, and their complicity in human rights violations worldwide.”

In the only reference to terrorism in the statement, the authors wrote: “We also do not forgot the victims of military occupations, of wars and terrorism in Afghanistan, Iraq, Palestina, Lebanon, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Mali, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso and many other places where what happened yesterday in Barcelona is a daily occurrence.”Finally, the authors added, “we emphasize our opposition to Islamophobia, Xenophobia and all forms of discrimination.” Solidarity, the authors added, “is our most powerful weapon. #Barcelona.”

ACOM, a Madrid-based pro-Israel network whose legal actions over the past years resulted in dozens of court rulings declaring the BDS movement discriminatory, sent the BDS Catalonia statement in an email to journalists, calling it “grotesque.”

“A movement based on hatred, the perpetuation of conflict and defense of terrorism like BDS cannot avoid proving at all times its immorality and double standard,” ACOM wrote in the email. “This is what happened in the latest lamentable statement by BDS Catalonia.
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Sky News: Police raids home of imam who is thought to have masterminded Barcelona terror attack

Sky News: Police raids home of imam who is thought to have masterminded Barcelona terror attack

19 August 2017 | 22:59 | FOCUS News Agency
Sofia. Police have raided the flat of an imam who they believe may have radicalised the Barcelona and Cambrils attackers.

It is reported that Abdelbaki es Satty is the ringleader of the terror cell and is responsible for directing the terrorists to commit the attacks in Spain which killed 14 people.

Es Satty was reportedly last seen on Tuesday and is said to be about 40 years old, but one line of inquiry being pursued by police is that he may have been killed in an explosion in Alcanar on Wednesday night.

His flatmate told newspaper La Vanguardia that es Satty left his home on Tuesday because he was going to Morocco, and did not hear from him again.A search warrant seen by Reuters confirms the flat which was raided by police belonged to a man named Abdelbaki es Satty, Sky News reports.

He started teaching in mosques in his local area of Ripoll in 2015 and was part of the local Muslim community, but his neighbours told El Pais his teachings about Islam were not radical.

They said he taught Moroccan-dialect Arabic to children and was very reserved.Pictures have emerged of the inside of es Satty's flat, which show scraps of paper covered in notes strewn around, a picture of a mosque on the wall and a mattress on the living room floor.

Speaking anonymously, a police official said investigators believed es Satty might have been a second fatal victim of a botched bomb-making operation in a house south of Barcelona on Wednesday.

Emergency services had already said that one person died and another was injured in a blast that destroyed the building.Police believe the house in Alcanar was being used as a makeshift bomb factory to plan the attacks in Barcelona, possibly using large butane gas canisters in even larger-scale attacks.

El Espanol said one plan may have been to drive a van packed with explosives into Gaudi's towering Sagrada Familia basilica in Barcelona.

The unfinished church is one of Spain's most visited monuments, with more than four million tourists last year.

Head of Catalonia's police, Josep Lluis Trapero, said earlier that the explosion had forced terrorists to scrap their original plan.
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Reuters: Catalan leaders: Barcelona attack won't derail independence drive

Reuters: Catalan leaders: Barcelona attack won't derail independence drive

18 August 2017 | 23:14 | FOCUS News Agency
BARCELONA/MADRID. Catalonia's leaders said on Friday that a deadly van attack in their capital, Barcelona, would not affect plans to hold an October referendum in the northeastern region on breaking away from the rest of Spain, Reuters reports.

Thirteen people were killed when a van plowed into crowds in central Barcelona on Thursday afternoon. Another woman died on Friday from injuries she sustained in a attempted attack hours later in the Catalan resort of Cambrils, which police said they thwarted by shooting dead five suspects.

The attacks come at a time of increasing tension between Madrid and Barcelona before the planned plebiscite on Oct.1, which the central government aims to block through the courts on the grounds that it goes against Spain's constitution.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and Catalonia's regional leader Carles Puigdemont put on a rare united front on Friday at a joint news conference, after making separate televised addresses the night before.

But signs of the strained relations between the affluent, populous region and Madrid authorities were still apparent.

Asked in a radio interview about an editorial in leading Spanish daily El Pais which called on Catalan parties to "return to reality" after the attacks, Puigdemont said: "Mixing up our priority now, which is to respond to the terrorist threat and attend to victims, with anything seems just vile to me.
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