Calls to reconquer al-Andalus are becoming more frequent and more strident.
“Clearly Spain forms part of the strategic objectives of global jihad. We are not the only ones but we are in their sights.” — Spanish Interior Minister Jorge Fernández Díaz.
by Soeren Kern
….Radical Muslims (and many moderate Muslims) believe that all territories Muslims lost during the Christian Reconquista of Spain still belong to the realm of Islam. They claim that Islamic law gives them the right to return there and re-establish Muslim rule.
In recent years, the return of “occupied” Al-Andalus to the fold of Islam has become an obsession for Muslims of all stripes, and calls to reconquer al-Andalus have become more frequent and more strident.
Commenting on the latest video, Spain’s Secretary of State for Security, Francisco Martínez, said Spanish police were remaining “vigilant” in the face of a “grave” jihadist threat.
Meanwhile, Moroccan authorities have warned Spanish police that some of the more than 3,000 Moroccan jihadists fighting in Syria and Iraq are beginning to return home, and that many of them are likely to attempt to infiltrate the Spanish mainland via the North African Spanish exclaves of Ceuta and Melilla.
The Moroccan Interior Minister, Mohamed Hassad, recently identified 1,221 Moroccan citizens who have joined jihadists groups in Syria and Iraq, as well as another 2,000 ethnic Moroccans who are citizens of other countries, including Spain.
Spanish and Moroccan counter-terrorism forces have stepped-up efforts to break up jihadist cells that have been proliferating in both countries.
On August 14, nine members of a recruitment cell for the IS were arrested in northern Morocco, not far from the North African Spanish exclave of Ceuta.
The arrests were made in the Moroccan cities of Fez, Tétouan and Fnideq, in what the Spanish Interior Ministrysaid was a joint intelligence operation between Moroccan and Spanish counter-terrorism police.
All the detainees are Moroccan citizens, several of whom made repeated trips to Ceuta to recruit jihadists and raise financial support for the IS.
“The jihadists recruited by the cell received instruction in weapons handling, assembly and placement of explosive devices and car theft, in order to participate in suicide terrorist attacks or to fight in conflict zones,” astatement by the Spanish Interior Ministry reported.
Some of those recruited by the cell are believed to have participated in beheadings in Syria and Iraq. Police say they are also examining computers and data storage devices to determine if there were plans to carry out a terror attack on Moroccan soil…..