Thursday, March 22, 2007

Foiled Maritime Terrorism in Morocco

Reuters is reporting today that a group of 12 would-be bombers have been foiled in Morocco. Their targets were foreign ships - an indication that jihadists continue to view economic targets as desirable, including maritime targets.

At least 12 would-be suicide bombers planned to blow up foreign ships at the Casablanca port and other Moroccan landmarks, top security officials were quoted as saying on Thursday.

They said at least six of the suspected bombers were still on the run, but others were arrested after their presumed leader blew himself up on March 11 to stop police taking him alive.

Abdelfattah Raydi, the 23-year suspected leader of the group of bombers, walked into an Internet cafe in Casablanca's Sidi Moumen slum on March 11 with another suspected bomber.

Raydi, who had worn an explosives belt for four days to avoid police catching him alive, detonated the device when the cafe owner shut the door and called authorities after he saw him consulting a jihadist Web site, newspapers said.

"Investigations showed that 12 suicide bombers among 30 terrorists linked to March 11's Casablanca plot were prepared to attack economic and security targets including blowing up foreign ships at Casablanca port and tourism facilities in Marrakesh, Essaouira and Agadir," wrote al Ahdath al Maghribia daily.
It's being called a "lucky accident" that the plot was prevented, but I'd say it's a good example of civic engagement in anti-terrorism. The Internet cafe owner could just have easily looked the other way, but he recognized a potential threat and decided to intervene.

The bad news out of the incident is that it provides further evidence of jihadists' attraction to the idea of mixing chemicals or biological agents with their bombs, as demonstrated on a number of recent occasions in Iraq.
The [Moroccan] papers also quoted officials as saying the would-be bombers planned to use "poison" in their planned attacks, showing a change in the country's home-grown terror.

Al Ahdath said the "poison" was a byproduct of tetanus pathogenic bacteria ...
These guys do a good job of sharing information via the Internet. If a tactic seems to work in one place, it begins to pop up in other places. So information sharing has to go on here, too, regarding vulnerability and risk.

1 comment:

MoRocco said...

it's good that some interventions are been made. but still there are too many suiciders that slow down the country's growth :(