Federal grand jury investigating Somali men

Categories: Somalis
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At least a dozen people who attend a prominent Minneapolis mosque have been called to testify before a federal grand jury regarding Somali men believed to be fighting with a terrorist group in Somalia.

One young man, who worships and volunteers at Abubakar As-Saddique Islamic Center, received a phone call from FBI agents late last year. They asked to meet him in a coffee shop for five minutes, according to Minnesota Public Radio:.

The man says after receiving the phone call, he agreed to meet with investigators.

"I knew my right to say I need a lawyer, but when they said it was five minutes, I'm thinking, 'Hey, talk to the guys and see what they're looking for.' But that five changed to about45 (minutes) to an hour," said the young man.

The young man, who is a college student living in the Twin Cities, says the agents first asked him questions about his own background -- where he went to school and what he did for a living.

And then the questions shifted to the missing. The agents showed him a couple dozen pictures of men who appeared to be in their teens or 20s. He was able to pick out about five or six. By the end of the interview, the man says the agents began to, in his words, "interrogate" him.

Abubakar As-saddique is a large mosque in South Minneapolis. The mosque has been at the center of reports of young Somali men who have gone missing, and who are believed to have joined Al-Shabab, a group fighting in Somalia that the FBI says has ties to Al-Qaeda. The mosque has denied any involvement in the disappearances or in indoctrinating those who have disappeared.

At least one man is rumored to have returned to the Twin Cities, according to MPR.




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