Missing Somali “youths:” we’re baaaack!
Posted by Ann Corcoran on March 20, 2009
Thanks to a friend from Tennessee, we now know that Fox News is reporting that some of the missing Somali youths*, thought to have been in Africa for terrorist training, have returned to the US. However, the FBI is not saying whether they will be arrested!
Many of the Somali-American men who were recruited to join an Al Qaeda-linked terrorist group overseas have returned to the United States, according to a source familiar with an FBI investigation into the matter — but the FBI still has not revealed publicly if it is pursuing arrests in the case.
“Some of the guys who were missing aren’t missing anymore,” the source said. “Some of them got blown up and some of them came back, and some of them are still there [in Somalia].”
For several months the FBI has been investigating at least 20 Somali-American men from the Minneapolis area who traveled to war-torn Somalia, where some of them trained and fought with an Al Qaeda-linked terrorist group known as al-Shabaab, according to counterterrorism officials.
Asked to characterize how many of those men are now back on American soil, the source would only say that “several” have returned. Federal authorities believe the men went to Somalia to join al-Shabaab, which has been warring with the moderate Somali government since 2006.
The Fox News report doesn’t have much more on the Minneapolis missing but goes into a discussion of other areas of the US where the FBI is working in the Somali community. In San Diego, one Somali-American has received a subpoena.
In fact, the FBI Field Office in San Diego has already interviewed “dozens” of people from the Somali-American community there, according to a local attorney.
Sherif [attorney] also said he knows at least one Somali-American who has received a subpoena to appear before a San Diego grand jury in the next couple of weeks. Sherif wouldn’t identify the person but described him as a naturalized U.S. citizen in his 30s. Sherif said the person “consulted” with him after receiving the subpoena. The person recently traveled to the Middle East, which may have raised a red flag with authorities, according to Sherif. He did not say where in the Middle East the person visited.
Meanwhile, law enforcement officials tell FOX News that federal authorities in Seattle have been keeping track of a group of men in Washington state with alleged ties to Somali-American terrorists.
Other cities with growing Somali populations that warrant watching are: Lewiston and Portland, ME, Boston, MA, Atlanta, GA, Columbus, OH and don’t forget Nashville, TN!
* If you are new to this story or you are a reporter or blogger, I recommend you visit this post we did in November where I have been keeping an archive of much of the coverage of the Somali missing youths saga.
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