Last month it emerged that Catalan police have been conducting a "census" to identify and register Muslim women who wear Islamic body-covering burqas and face-covering niqabs.
The police move came after threats from a jihadist group affiliated to Al Qaeda to carry out terrorist attacks in Catalonia, home to an estimated 450,000 Muslims and containing the largest concentration of radical Islamists in Europe.
The threats were issued by a group called "Africamuslima" in response to efforts by Catalonian lawmakers to increase surveillance of radical Salafists seeking to impose Islamic Sharia law in Spain and other parts of Europe.
According to diplomatic cables obtained by Wikileaks and published by the Madrid-based El País newspaper, many of the Muslims living in Catalonia are single males who are unemployed and "susceptible to jihadist recruitment,".
Spanish authorities are especially concerned about the threat posed by Salafism, a radical strain of Islam that seeks to re-establish an Islamic empire [Caliphate] across the Middle East, North Africa and Spain, which Salafists view as a Muslim state that must be reconquered for Islam.
Spain's National Intelligence Center [CNI] says Catalonia is home to hundreds and possibly thousands of Salafists who, according to intelligence experts, pose the greatest threat to Spain's national security.
Catalan officials have recently redoubled efforts to improve surveillance of Salafist groups in the region.Filed under: http://www.theleader.info/article/40718/
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