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Spain Terror Attacks: Suspect's Mother Says 'Go to the Police'

by Tim Stelloh /
Image: Younes Abouyaaqoub, one of the suspects in the Spain terror attacks
Younes Abouyaaqoub, one of the suspects in the Spain terror attacks, is on the run.- / AFP - Getty Images

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The mother of a man who authorities believe was involved in a pair of deadly vehicle attacks in Spain last week publicly pleaded with him on Sunday: Turn yourself in.

“He must go to the police,” Hannou Ghanimi said of her son, 22-year-old Younes Abouyaaqoub.

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Abouyaaqoub is one of 12 suspects who police said carried out attacks on Thursday that killed 14 people and injured more than 120 in the Catalon capital, Barcelona, and the seaside town of Cambrils.

Spanish authorities said it was unclear if Abouyaaqoub was the driver of a van that plowed into a crowded tourist destination in downtown Barcelona. The driver fled, and may have crossed the border into France, police said.

Image: Younes Abouyaaqoub, one of the suspects in the Spain terror attacks, is on the run.
Younes Abouyaaqoub, one of the suspects in the Spain terror attacks, is on the run.- / AFP - Getty Images

Ghanimi told reporters that she wanted her son to go to jail, according to a translation by Abouyaaqoub’s cousin, Fatima.

“She doesn’t want others to be killed,” she said.

Ghanimi also pointed to a local mosque as a place where the suspected terrorists may have been radicalized.

Related: Spain Terror Attacks Put Muslims in Catalonia Under Harsh Spotlight

“Since the imam arrived here, everything changed about the young boys,” she said. “But you’d never suspect that they’d pass on these things here, much less amongst your own people.”

Police have raided the home of an unidentified local cleric, and the father of two of the suspected terrorists has also said his sons were radicalized by a local imam.

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