WARARKA BARAAWEPOST Saturday 7 august 2010 

 

 

14 Charged for supporting Somalia group

 

WASHINGTON Attorney General Eric Holder says 14 people have been charged with providing support for the terrorist group al-Shabab in Somalia.

Holder says the charges reflect a disturbing trend that leaders in Muslim communities in the United States are try to help law enforcement agencies address.

Most of the people are U.S. citizens, with some supporting the terrorist organization from the United States and others traveling to Somalia to do so.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity in the investigation which is culminating in several indictments.

The charges in Minnesota are the latest development in an inquiry in that state which has been under way for some time.

Two indictments unsealed in Minnesota on Thursday added five new names to a list of people charged in the investigation in that state, bringing the total charged in the state to 19. Two were women from the Rochester, Minn., area accused of raising money for al-Shabaab.

Roughly 20 men all but one of Somali descent left Minnesota from December 2007 through October 2009 to join al-Shabab, a violent group that seeks to establish an Islamic state in Somalia.

The federal government designated al-Shabab a foreign terrorist organization in March 2008, and said it has ties to al-Qaida.

In another case unrelated to Thursday's developments, a 26-year-old Chicago man who told an FBI informant that he didn't expect to reach the age of 30 was charged with plotting to go to Somalia to become a suicide bomber for al-Qaida and al-Shabab.

During a brief hearing Wednesday, prosecutors told a judge that the Chicago man, Shaker Masri, attempted to provide support through the use of a weapon of mass destruction outside the United States.

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