Barcelona mourns as police step up hunt for driver of van

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Spanish Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoida said Saturday that police moved quickly to break up a terrorist cell accused of carrying out the attacks in Barcelona and Cambrils, with at least 12 people arrested or killed.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks in Cambrils and Barcelona, a statement by the jihadist group said on Saturday.

Spanish police are still hunting Younes Abouyaaqoub, a 22-year-old Moroccan thought to have been the driver in the 17 August attack in Barcelona, which left 14 dead and 120 injured.

Eight hours after the Barcelona attack, in the coastal resort town of Cambrils, an Audi vehicle drove into a group of people walking by the seafront, then five men emerged wielding knives and wearing fake canisters meant to look like suicide vests.

Police believe that the attacks are the work of an organized group of terrorists - and that they acted after an accidental explosion derailed their plans to carry out a bombing in Barcelona.

"They were preparing one or several attacks in Barcelona and an explosion in Alcanar stopped this as they no longer had the material they needed to commit attacks of an even bigger scope", the head of Catalonia's police, Josep Lluis Trapero, noted earlier. All the suspects hail from Ripoll, a quiet, upscale town of 10,000 about 100 kilometers (62 miles) north of Barcelona.

Apart from Abouyaaqoub, authorities are searching for two other people though it is not certain they are at large. The Catalan Interior Minster, Joaquim Forn, stressed that the police operation could not be considered over until all those suspected of being part of the cell were in custody.

Police shot all five assailants dead but said late Friday it was "increasingly unlikely" that the Barcelona driver was among them, Reuters reported.

Explosives experts brought in a bulldozer Saturday to clear rubble before conducting a number of controlled explosions at the site in Alcanar's Montecarlo area.

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The dead and injured came from countries as varied as France, Venezuela, Australia, Ireland, Peru, Algeria and China.

Six civilians and one police officer were injured in the attack.

The nearly 130 people injured in the attacks were from 34 different countries.

The boy's mother was injured in the attack and taken to a hospital, where she told hospital workers before losing consciousness that her son had been with her, Jimenez said.

"We express our deepest sympathies to the loved ones of this individual" and to others who suffered from the attack, Tillerson said.

Catalan authorities said 34 nationalities are among the victims in Barcelona, with an American, a Canadian and three Italians named so far among the dead. Two other suspects are believed still at large.

Both Spanish attacks followed the same modus operandi.

Of the 14 dead in the two attacks, five are Spanish, two are Italians, two are Portuguese, one Belgian, one Canadian and one a US citizen, emergency services and authorities from those countries have confirmed so far. These have included highly orchestrated attacks, like the one in Paris in November 2015, where 130 people were killed when multiple ISIS terrorists carried out simultaneous assaults in the city.

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