Report: Al-Qaida offshoot denies Morocco bombing

A group that tracks extremist websites says al-Qaida's offshoot in North Africa has denied it carried out a bombing in Morocco that killed 17 people — mostly foreign tourists.

SITE Intelligence Group says al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, known as AQIM, has denied accusations that it was behind the April 28 attack at a popular cafe overlooking the famed Djemaa el-Fna square in Marrakech.

SITE said Saturday that Nouakchott News Agency in Mauritania reported receiving a communique from AQIM that denied the group had any connection to the blast — Morocco's deadliest terror bombing since 2003.

Moroccan authorities say they have arrested three Moroccans in connection with the bombing — including top suspect Adil Al Athmani, whom authorities say has loyalties to al-Qaida.