A man allegedly linked to the Nov. 13 Paris terrorist attacks has been arrested, Moroccan officials announced Monday, the Associated Press reported. The man was identified only by the initials J.A. and had a “direct relationship” with the militants who had carried out the attacks, according to a statement issued by the Interior Ministry.
The man, who was a Belgian national of Moroccan origin, fought in Syria with an al Qaeda affiliate before joining the the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, according to the statement. During his time in Syria, the suspect allegedly received military training and had a "direct relationship" with ISIS field commanders, including the mastermind of the Paris attacks and others who threatened attacks in France and Belgium, according to the statement. However, the statement did not clarify what type of relationship he had with the Paris attackers.
The man was arrested Friday in the town of Mohammedia, Morocco — which is located between Casablanca and Rabat in the region of Casablanca-Settat — after traveling through Turkey, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, the Ministry said in its statement.
Following the Paris attacks, in which three teams of militants orchestrated a coordinated attack on separate locations and left 130 people dead, at least one suspect remained at large, the Associated Press reported. The alleged “mastermind” of the attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, was killed in a raid on a Paris apartment in Saint-Denis.