Police searching for new suspected driver in Barcelona van attack

Spanish policemen stand guard on the Rambla boulevard on Friday a day after a van ploughed into the crowd, killing 14 people and injuring over 100 on the Rambla in Barcelona. Police are now searching for 22-year-old Younes Abouyaaqoub as the suspected driver.Photo by Angel Garcia/ UPI

Aug. 19 (UPI) — Authorities in Spain are searching for a different suspected driver in the van attack that killed more than a dozen people in Barcelona.

Spanish police said they are now searching for Moroccan-born Younes Abouyaaqoub, 22, as the driver of the van after the previous suspect, 17-year-old Moussa Oukabir, was named as one of five suspected members of a terrorist cell killed in a shootout with police after another attack in the nearby town of Cambrils.

The attack in Barcelona’s Las Ramblas tourist district killed 14 people and wounded at least 120 more after a van drove over a curb into a large crowd earlier this week, police said.

Oukabir is suspected of using his brother’s documents to rent the van used in the Barcelona attack and another found in the town of Vic believed to be their intended getaway vehicle.

Police initially targeted Oukabir as the central figure behind the attack, but now believe Abouyaaqoub is their main suspect.

A French security official said Spanish police were looking for a Renault Kangoo van rented in Spain that may have crossed into France.

The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the Las Ramblas attack, and Spanish officials believe it was carried out by a terrorist cell of at least 12 people.

Spanish officials confirmed on Saturday that the accused terrorist cell responsible for the attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils had been “completely dismantled,” although the manhunt for Abouyaaqoub continued.


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