Spanish police arrest al-Qaida suspect wanted by US

Madrid: Spanish authorities say police have arrested a suspected recruiter for an Islamic extremist group on a warrant issued by the United States.

Catalonia’s regional interior department said today that Ali Charaf Damache, of Algerian-Irish nationality, was arrested in the regional capital of Barcelona.

The department said Damache was wanted by US authorities in connection with emails sent in the United States between 2009 and 2010 that indicated he was recruiting for al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and was trying to establish cells.

It said the man was taken to the National Court in Madrid today and was provisionally jailed while his extradition is reviewed.

His arrest yesterday came after police were informed he was in Barcelona and noticed he was changing hotel every few days.