Terrorist Cell Linked to ISIS Leaders Uncovered in Tunisia

Tunisian National Guard units uncovered a four-member terrorist cell that has pledged allegiance to ISIS. They said defendants were in contact with elements who joined extremist organizations in hotbeds outside Tunisia.

Security probes have shown that one of Nabeul city’s residents downloaded posts and videos on his account on social media to glorify ISIS.

The defendant also contacted terrorist elements in Tunisia and made virtual contacts with a number of Tunisian extremists abroad, who were found to have joined militant groups.

While pursuing movements of extremist groups, counterterrorism teams stepped up their investigations until confirming there were three other elements who belong to the same cell, adopt the same ideas and communicate with the same ISIS leaders.

Tunisian security sources stressed that counterterrorism teams have arrested the four defendants and opened a judicial case against them for glorifying and inciting extremism and for belonging to a militant organization.

In this context, the country’s Interior Ministry announced last week’s arresting five other operatives within the so-called ‘solo wolves’ that adopt radical ideas.

In its security reports, it said four of them had committed a series of thefts in the so-called “logging,” in order to raise funds and equipment necessary for terrorist elements to continue carrying out operations in the country’s western mountains.

It also pointed to seizing videos with extensive information on the manufacture of explosives and conventional mines, as well as photographs of terrorist attacks in Tunisia in recent years.

These include carrying out a terrorist attack on a tourist hotel in Sousse (central-eastern Tunisia) and a suicide attack in 2018 by Tunisian Mona Qibla on Habib Bourguiba Avenue and targeting foreign tourists in the National Museum of Bardo (west of Tunis).

The same security sources pointed out that the terrorist elements were planning to carry out attacks targeting political and media figures and government installations as part of their response to the success of the Tunisian security and military establishment in arresting ISIS leaders.