Lack of Collaboration with Algerian Services Makes Climate Propitious for Terrorism in Region, Head of BCIJ
The absence of collaboration between the Algerian services and their Moroccan counterparts makes the climate propitious for the development of terrorism in the region, said director of the central bureau for judiciary investigations (BCIJ) Abdelhak Khiame.
This lack of collaboration is detrimental to both countries, Khiame told weekly "Jeune Afrique" in its latest issue, explaining that "it requires us for example to redouble our efforts to control our borders."
Collaboration with the Algerian services is of course desirable and possible, he said, adding that "our neighbours should separate political issues from security ones".
Referring to the situation in the Sahel, the BCIJ director said that, in addition to ISIS whose leaders chose the Maghreb after failing in Iraq and Syria, the polisario can also be considered as a terrorist organization in this region.
"We have identified more than a hundred of its members operating in AQIM, along which they have been involved in attacks in northern Mauritania," he said.
Khiame said that the number of terrorist cells dismantled in Morocco has decreased from 21 in 2015 to 19 in 2016 and only 9 in 2017, noting that the years 2015 and 2016 were marked by the recrudescence of the terrorist phenomenon all over the world.
"Our strategy has always been based on anticipation and prevention, and it has yielded its fruits," he said, noting that the terrorist risk is still present in Morocco.
The BCIJ head said that 1,668 Moroccans have joined ISIS, adding that "some were killed in the fight against the coalition forces, but we do not have, for now, an idea about their number".
"All these individuals are known to our services and will be arrested if they try to return to the country," he said.