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Expert On Terrorism Warns About The Implantation Of Radical Islamism In Spain Since 11-M

November 11, 2009

Jihadist networks “have been trying to implement their structure in Spain” since the 2004 Madrid train bombings, and therefore it is necessary for police authorities to “design and implement solutions to reduce the magnitude of the jihadist structural phenomenon in Spain”. Those are the conclusions of a work document prepared by Javier Jordán Enamorado, professor of the Department of Political and Administration Sciences of the University of Granada (Spain) and expert on jihadist networks, recently published by the Royal Institute Elcano.

This work has analysed the development experiences by the jihads in Spain after the 3/11, and the author has analysed the information of the 28 most relevant police actions carried out since March of 2004 against the jihadist networks in Spain, without considering those directly related to the investigation of Madrid bombings.

His paper reveals pieces of information such as that 70% of the persons under arrest in Spain since the 3/11 come from Algeria and Morocco, followed by Pakistanis (23 arrested since 2004) and, in the fourth place, native Spanish. O this last, 14 of the 19 individuals of Spanish origin under arrest lived (and were probably born) in Ceuta and Melilla, but their parents were Moroccans.

Catalonia, at the head

As regards the geographic location of the dismantled networks, Jordán Enamorado’s paper highlights that more than a half of the cases studied the alleged members of the same network lived in different autonomous regions, sometimes separated by hundreds kilometres.

By regions, Catalonia is the area where more antiterrorist operations have been developed (16 of 28, 14 of them in the province of Barcelona), followed by Andalusia (10), Valencian Community (6) and Madrid (5).

Javier Jordán coincides with a report submitted by the King’s College of London to the European Commission in December 2007, which pointed out that jihadist recruitment takes place essentially in three places: mosques and oratories first, followed by prisons.

Jordán Enamorado’s paper states that, even if the main role of jihadist networks in Spain is logistic, since 2004 “the number of groups which intended to threaten Spanish security again has increased”. Thus, there is evidence of at least seven terrorist plans, most of them in a very early preparation stage, which intended to attempt against mass civil objectives such as transport systems (Madrid and Barcelona’s tubes or the ferry that connects Ceuta and Algeciras) or department stores. The two cities most frequently listed as possible objectives are Madrid and Barcelona.

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