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Mar 12th, 2009


FBI Investigates Somalis in Minneapolis

Suicide bombing by Twin Cities man increases scrutiny of Somali immigrants

Image: Abubakar As-Saddique Islamic Center
Worshippers at the Abubakar As-Saddique Islamic Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota’s largest mosque. The mosque is suspected by the families of some missing Somali men of having a role in their loved ones’ disappearance. (Photo credit: Craig Lassig / AP)


March 10, 2009

MINNEAPOLIS — Members of the Twin Cities’ thriving Somali community say they are being questioned by the FBI as it investigates whether some young men are being “radicalized” in Minnesota and recruited to fight with terror groups in their homeland. …

Why some would want to leave, especially to return to a lawless country, has confused many Somalis.

“Like most of the community, I had difficulty believing that anybody would go to Somalia after their own families left because of wars,” said Dr. Abdirahman Mohamed, a Minneapolis physician. “It stunned most of us, I think, when we heard a name of someone who went and died.”

The Senate’s Homeland Security Committee plans a hearing Wednesday on possible terror recruitment in the United States, and witnesses from Minnesota are expected to testify. …

‘Radicalized’ in the Twin Cities

[In] October, a Minneapolis man carried out a suicide bombing in Somalia. FBI Director Robert Mueller said last month that the bomber probably had been “radicalized” in the Twin Cities.

Now many Somalis say FBI agents have questioned them about recent travels abroad and asked which mosques they attended. …

The Oct. 29 bombing by Shirwa Ahmed was part of a series of coordinated attacks that targeted a U.N. compound, the Ethiopian consulate and the presidential palace in Hargeisa, capital of the Somaliland region.

CBS
The Oct. 29, 2009 bombing by Shirwa Ahmed was part of a series of coordinated attacks that targeted a U.N. compound, the Ethiopian consulate and the presidential palace in Hargeisa, capital of the Somaliland region. (Photo credit: CBS / WCCO)

U.S. counterterrorism officials have raised concerns that an extremist group called al-Shabab is recruiting young men in Minnesota and elsewhere. It isn’t clear if Ahmed was part of the group. Al-Shabab, a name meaning “The Youth,” controls much of Somalia and wants to establish an Islamic state there.

Many welcome investigation

Many Somalis in the Twin Cities welcome the federal investigation, including Abdirizak Bihi, whose teenage nephew left Minneapolis in November and called his family days later saying he was in Somalia. The boy’s whereabouts are unknown.

“They did not decide to go back to the hell that their families fled from,” Bihi said of the young men who left. “There must be some group that has been brainwashing them.” …

Cawo Abdi, a professor of sociology at the University of Minnesota, said the FBI has given “the impression that there were all these terrorist cells in our midst.”

“It is really unfortunate that everyone has to pay the price for the crime,” he said.

The families of some men who left suspect Minnesota’s largest mosque, Abubakar As-Saddique Islamic Center, of having a role in their loved ones’ decision — something mosque officials have repeatedly denied. The mosque recently held an open house to try to address public concerns.

Director Farhan Hurre said mosque officials have noticed FBI agents conducting surveillance outside the mosque. …

——

Related reports on this site

Somali Terror Suspects Indicted (Aug. 7, 2010)

Yemen-Somalia Terror Nexus (Jan. 12, 2010)

Minnesota Somalis Jihad-Bound? (Jan. 26, 2009)

——

Updates

6/9/09: Mystery surrounds death of Somali teen

7/13/09: Fourth man from Minnesota killed in Somalia

——

Security Developments in Iraq

Following are security developments in Iraq on Wednesday, March 11, 2009, as reported by Reuters.

MOSUL – A car bomb near an Iraqi army patrol killed three soldiers and wounded 10 people, including two soldiers, in western Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, police said.

MOSUL – Two policemen and one civilian were wounded when a militant threw a hand grenade at a police patrol in central Mosul, police said.

JALAWLA – Three policemen were wounded by a roadside bomb in a village near the town of Jalawla, 70 miles northeast of Baghdad, police said.

KIRKUK – Two people were killed and seven were wounded when a car bomb exploded near a police patrol in Kirkuk, 155 miles north of Baghdad, police said.





11 Responses to “FBI Probing Somali Terror Link”
  1. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Fears of ˜Homegrown Terrorism Says:

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  2. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Yemen-Somalia Terror Nexus Says:

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  3. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Somali Terror Suspects Indicted Says:

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  4. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Minnesota Somalis Jihad-Bound? Says:

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  5. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » New Post-9/11 Terrorist Strategy Says:

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  6. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Portland Somali Car Bomb Sting Says:

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  7. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Baltimore Bomb Plot ‘Jihad’ Says:

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