There is currently a large-scale manhunt underway in Spain for Moroccan-born, Younes Abouyaaqoub, who has been linked to the Barcelona terror attack.
According to Spanish media reports, he was likely the driver of the van that ploughed through a crowd that killed at least 13 people.
One of the deadliest attacks in Barcelona’s history took place on August 2017. A van drove right into people at one of the busiest intersections of the city killing 13 and injuring multiple others. The Islamic State (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the act.
The attack in Barcelona began at around 4.50pm on Thursday. It occurred in a popular and busy section of the city called the Las Ramblas area. The van that ploughed into the crowd had been rented. According to witnesses, the vehicle deliberately targeted people while moving at a high speed.
Authorities have arrested two people in connection to the incident. One of them is from Melilla, north Africa and the other was born in Morocco. Neither of these men were the driver. The police also have claimed to have thwarted another terror attack by shooting down and killing five men with links to the attack.
According to various reports, Younes Abouyaaqoub, is suspected of being the driver of the van that perpetuated the attack. The 22-year-old man was born in Morocco and was living in Barcelona at the time of the attack.
Earlier Moussa Oukabir, 17, was considered the prime suspect. However, the police chief Josep Trapero noted that the law enforcement agency believes that the original driver probably had “less weight” that Oukabir. Oukabir, was one of the five men shot down by the police. However, the police now believe that it was Oukabir who had used his brother’s identification documents in order to rent out the van used in the attack. The five suspected jihadists were reportedly wearing explosive belts when they were shot.
Our assessment is that with the Islamic State losing ground in Iraq and Syria, the terror outfit might begin undertaking similar terror attacks across the Western world.