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16 Men Charged in Connection with Casablanca Suicide Bombings - 2003-06-01


Moroccan authorities say 16 men have been charged with murder in connection with suicide bombings that killed 43 people in Casablanca on May 16.

State Prosecutor Moulay Abdellah Alaoui Belghiti suggested that at least 13 of the 16 men belonged to a "reserve team" of suicide bombers.

Twelve terrorists were among the 43 people killed by the five, nearly simultaneous bomb blasts that hit a Spanish restaurant, a major downtown hotel and a Jewish community center. More than 100 people were injured.

Moroccan authorities say the attacks were carried out by a small Islamic group, Assirat al-Moustaquim, made up of Moroccans from a poor Casablanca neighborhood.

Investigators have also said the bombers had links to international groups. The investigation continues and dozens more people are being questioned.

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