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Sunday, 18 November, 2001, 11:46 GMT
Terror suspects remanded in Spain
One of the suspects, Mohamed Seedl
All the suspects deny links to terrorist groups
A Spanish judge has ordered the detention of eight terror suspects believed to have links to the 11 September suicide attacks in the United States.

The eight are suspected of being members of Osama Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network.

National High Court judge Baltasar Garzon released three other men, who will need to come back to court when asked.

The 11 - with Tunisian, Algerian and Syrian backgrounds - were arrested last week, most of them in Madrid.

Al-Qaeda link

Most of the detained men have Spanish citizenship and all but one were originally from Muslim countries.

Imad Eddin Barakat Yarbas, alias Abu Dahdah
Yarbas: Alleged to have links to a key aide of Osama Bin Laden
The suspects were alleged to have been recruiting people to attend training camps and providing false papers for them.

All 11 denied having any connection with any terrorist group or Bin Laden.

Among those detained was Syrian Imad Eddin Barakat Yarbas, also known as Abu Dahdah, said by police to be linked to al-Qaeda.

He is said to have direct contacts with Bin Laden's right-hand man Mohammad Atef, whom a Taleban official confirmed on Sunday had been killed in a US bombing raid.

The detentions came after some six years of investigations by Judge Garzon, best known internationally for his attempts to have former Chilean dictator General Augusto Pinochet extradited to Spain to face trial for human rights crimes.

Police seized computer material, videos of Islamic guerrilla activities, hunting rifles, swords, false identity documents and a substantial quantity of money in the raids.

Strasbourg

The arrests in Spain follow a number of arrests across Europe, as authorities move against those with suspected links to Bin Laden's group.

Last week, five Algerian militants alleged to have links with Bin Laden were arrested in Strasbourg.

The four men and one woman were said to have been plotting to launch attacks in the French city.

They were also suspected of organising the escape to Spain of Mohamed Besnakhria, an Algerian said to be one of Bin Laden's chief lieutenants in Europe.

See also:

07 Nov 01 | Europe
Swiss quiz Bin Laden suspects
18 Sep 01 | South Asia
Who is Osama Bin Laden?
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