German authorities have issued an international arrest warrant for a Moroccan on charges that he helped plan and prepare the devastating attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, prosecutors said Friday.

Zakariya Essabar, 24, becomes the third fugitive sought by German prosecutors in a widening investigation into the Hamburg-based terrorist cell to which three of the Sept. 11 suicide hijackers allegedly belonged.

Essabar had contacts with the three suspected hijackers, all Arabs who lived and studied in Hamburg, as well as with Said Bahaji and Ramzi Binalshibh, the two other suspects being sought by Germany, the prosecutor's office said in a statement.

He studied at the same Hamburg technical college as Ziad Jarrah, one of the suspected hijackers aboard the jetliner that crashed in Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, the prosecutors said, adding that Essabar had wanted to travel last February to Florida but was twice refused a U.S. visa.

Essabar was last seen in Hamburg in August and his current whereabouts are unknown, prosecutors said.