Spanish police claimed yesterday they had broken up a terrorist network that was recruiting and aiding suicide bombers for attacks on coalition forces in Iraq.
Five hundred police officers were involved in raids across the country and 16 alleged radical &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/main/2002/06/11/30131.html ' target=_blank>Islamists were arrested.
Eleven of them have been accused of having links to &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/hotspots/2005/05/26/59986.html ' target=_blank>Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi, considered to be al-Qaida's leader in Iraq.
Police said the network had tentacles that stretched to the UK, but British anti-terrorist officials said that the men in custody did not appear to have any direct links to suspected militants in Britain. Spanish police yesterday named one man whom they believed had successfully carried out a suicide attack in Iraq last month.
They also identified several others who had volunteered to travel to Iraq to carry out such attacks, reports the Guardians Unlimited.
The 11 suspects linked to al-Zarqawi constituted an Islamic support network in Spain with a jihad ideology for the Iraqi cause, the statement said.
They were allegedly recruited by a network run by two Moroccans who formerly worked out of Syria, authorities said.
The 11 aimed to recruit radicals willing to commit suicide attacks against coalition forces in Iraq, according to the statement.