World

Spain arrests 16 suspected al-Qaeda members

Spain has arrested 16 suspected al-Qaeda members.

Police in Spain have arrested 16 suspected members of the al-Qaeda terrorist network.

Officials say the suspects are believed to have been preparing new attacks. They are also thought to have connections with other alleged terrorists arrested recently in connection with the ricin scare in Britain and France.

Police seized a large quantity of explosives, chemical materials and documents in the raids.

Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar said the people arrested "were preparing to commit attacks." The arrests were made in Barcelona and other cities in northeastern Spain.

Friday's arrests bring to 35 the number of suspected Islamic terrorists detained in Spain since the Sept. 11 attacks.