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Counterterrorism

Spanish police arrest four people linked to 'Islamic State' smuggling network

Spanish authorities have arrested 168 people suspected of involvement in Islamist militant activity since the country raised its security threat alert in 2015. The latest had alleged links to the 2015 Paris attacks.

The Spanish Civil Guard has arrested four people allegedly involved in an irregular migration network linked to the so-called "Islamic State" (IS), the Interior Ministry said on Monday.

IS militants, including those involved in the November 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris, allegedly used the smuggling network to enter Europe hidden among refugees fleeing Syria's civil war.

The detainees were reportedly in contact with two alleged terrorists arrested in Salzburg, Austria, last year.

Two of the suspects were arrested in the towns of Arteixo and Tufions-Vimianzo in the northwest Galician province of La Coruna and two others in the southeastern province of Almeria.

Police released no further information on their identities.

The ministry stressed that immigration networks were undergoing increased monitoring to prevent their use by terrorists.

Spanish authorities have arrested 168 people suspected of involvement in Islamist militant activity since it raised its security threat alert in 2015.

aw/tj (Reuters, AP, dpa, EFE)

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