Terror funds raised in Canada, U.S. says....................
An American indictment charging 14 people in the U.S. with funding “a deadly pipeline” to a Somali terror group claims some of the fundraising was done in Canada.
The president of the Canadian Somali Congress said Friday he’s heard from sources within the community that there was some fundraising in Canada but not to the extent that occurred in the U.S. between September 2008 and July 2009.
The indictment in Minnesota charged two women, Amina Farah Ali and Hawo Mohamed Hassan, “and others raised funds in Rochester and Minneapolis, and elsewhere in the United States and Canada, some of which Ali directed to al-Shabaab.”
The two were arrested and charged with providing material support to terrorists and making false statements.
Al-Shabaab was put on Canada’s banned terrorist group list in March and was designated by the U.S. state department as a foreign terror group in 2008. It is considered a fundamentalist Islamic terror group that wants in part to overthrow Somalia’s provisional government.
“I haven’t personally seen any fundraising ... but I did hear credible community reports, at that time, especially during the Ethiopian invasion (of Somalia in 2006) and after, of hardcore fundraising,” Ahmed Hussen said.
“A lot of it was in the U.S. but some of it” occurred in Canada, he said.
“A lot of it was underground, so I couldn’t personally observe it, but I have come across a lot of people within the community who have given me reports on their observations of that kind of fundraising activity,” Hussen said.
He said the fundraising in Canada “wasn’t a lot of money,” as most of the cash came from the U.S., including from a reported gathering in Minnesota that raked in about $500,000 for weapons.
“As far as Canada was concerned, Canada was the lower end of the fundraising,” Hussen said.
The RCMP would neither confirm nor deny if it
was involved in an investigation into al-Shabaab fundraising.
“These indictments and arrests — in Minnesota, Alabama, and California — shed further light on a deadly pipeline that has routed funding and fighters to al-Shabaab from cities across the United States,” U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said.
Ali and Hassan raised funds under the false pretence that they would be used to aid the poor
and the needy, he stated.
“It’s scary,” Hussen said. “We as an organization have been concerned about Shabaab, we’ve been concerned about the recruitment of Canadian Somalis. We’ve been concerned about the repercussions. We love Canada, we put Canada first and we don’t want anything that jeopardizes our country.
“Events have played out as we, or even worse, as we thought it would,” he said.
Al-Shabaab has recruited seven Canadians to battle in Somalia, one of which has since been killed, Hussen said.
“This is serious,” he said. “It touches families ... we condemn al-Shabaab unequivocally.”