First Published: 2017-09-14

Barcelona terror cell made 100 kilos of TATP explosive
Catalan daily reports that cell responsible for Barcelona terror attacks planned to make 100 kilos of ‘mother of satan’ explosives preferred by jihadists worldwide, more than any known seizure in Europe.
Middle East Online

Flower tribute on Barcelona's La Rambla for 16 victims of August terror attack

MADRID - The terror cell that carried out deadly attacks in Spain in August had been planning to use 100 kilos of TATP explosive to cause even more carnage, a Catalan daily reported Thursday.

This is far higher than any of the known seizures in Europe of the easy-to-make explosive known as the "mother of Satan" and used by jihadists everywhere from Paris and Brussels to the battlefields of Syria and Iraq.

According to the Periodico de Catalunya daily, Mohamed Houli Chemlal, the only survivor of an explosion in a house used as a bomb factory by the cell, told a judge investigating the attacks they were making 100 kilos of the explosive.

Asked by reporters, Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoido refused to confirm the information, as did Spain's National Court, which deals with terror cases.

Chemlal told the judge that the blast happened when members of the terror cell were in the final stage of making the explosives, which they wanted to put into 20 bags divided into three vans to wreak havoc near famous landmarks, the daily said.

TATP has become the explosive of choice for the Islamic State group, as it can easily be made from ingredients such as acetone and oxygenated water that are easily available in high street stores.

Investigators found 15 kilos of the explosive in a flat near Brussels after suicide attacks at the Belgian capital's airport in March 2016.

It was also used in attacks in Paris in November 2015 and in Manchester in May.

According to the Catalan daily, the first floor of the house in Alcanar used by the terror cell "was completely covered with the substance that was drying."

But something went wrong and the house exploded, prompting the surviving members of the cell to carry out their vehicle rampage attacks in Barcelona and the seaside resort of Cambrils on August 17 and 18.

The attacks left 16 people dead.


Libya to investigate 'slave auction' footage

Iraq top court declares Kurd referendum unconstitutional

Saudi Arabia, Arab allies push for unity against Iran, Hezbollah meddling

15 women killed in food aid crush in Morocco

Rare moments of joy at Arabs’ unprecedented World Cup qualifications

UN chief horrified by Libya slave auctions

Qatar 2022 chief has no regrets over hosting World Cup

Gheit says Lebanon should be 'spared' from regional tensions

Syria ‘de-escalation zone’ does nothing to stop civilian deaths

Is a demilitarised Palestinian state a viable option?

S&P affirms good Saudi credit ratings

Israel president faces big backlash over Palestinian scarf

Sudan leader to visit Russia Thursday

Seven years into Libya’s civil war, the chaos continues

Lebanon FM will not attend Arab League Iran summit

Syrian forces liberate Albu Kamal from IS

Israel votes to shut migrant centre, deport Africans

Diplomats from Iran, Russia, Turkey discuss Syria

Libya to investigate ‘slave auction’ footage

Piece by piece, Iran moves towards a ‘new empire’

Netanyahu faces new questioning over corruption case

Syria troops, allies retake most of Albu Kamal from IS

EU cuts funding to Turkey in 2018 budget

Lebanon's Hariri arrives in Paris

Egypt opens Gaza border for first time since unity deal

US-Russia rift threatens fragile prospects for Syria peace

'Caliphate' in tatters but IS still a threat

Saudi Arabia recalls ambassador to Berlin over Gabriel Lebanon comments

Russia again vetoes renewal of Syria gas attacks probe

UN weighs bid to save Syria gas attacks probe

IS attack kills 26 displaced people in Syria

Saudi FM says Lebanon 'held hostage by Hezbollah'

Egypt to open Rafah crossing for 3 days

Turkish troops pulled from NATO drill amid new tensions

Six children among civilians killed in shelling of Eastern Ghouta

US official calls on Sudan to stop 'church demolitions'

Hariri set to leave Saudi Arabia for France

Fears of bombs, IS cells still haunt Mosul

Iraq retakes Rawa, last town held by IS

Riyadh striking deals with people detained in anti-graft purge

Iran criticises French Mideast policy

Russia again blocks UN resolution on Syria action

Israel military chief says ready to cooperate with Saudi Arabia

Egypt confirms death of wanted jihadist

UK denies link between citizen detained in Iran and £400m debt