Alternate Title: Building Community Resilience: Minneapolis-St. Paul Pilot Program - A Community-Led Local Framework
"Minnesota is home to the largest number of Somali immigrants in the United States. The largest concentration is located in Hennepin County. This community has overcome many challenges since they began immigrating to Minnesota in the 1990s. Minnesota offered a strong economy and immigration-friendly programs. Today, the Somali community is a peaceful group of entrepreneurs, therapists, religious leaders, educators, law enforcement officers and many others. Despite the many challenges this community has overcome, many remain. This framework addresses some of the community-identified challenges. Beginning in 2007, al-Shabaab began recruiting Somali Minnesotans to fight overseas on behalf of the terrorist organization. Many young Somali Minnesotans left, including 26-year-old Shirwa Ahmed, a Somali-born American citizen, who on October 29, 2008, became the first documented American suicide bomber. More than 20 young Somalis have been publicly charged in U.S. District Court in Minnesota on terrorism-related charges. Recently, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) began capitalizing on the tactics used by al-Shabaab to recruit Somali Minnesotans to travel overseas to fight. ISIL is using more sophisticated technology, social media and personal outreach to target Somali Minnesotans. Since 2013, a large number of Somali Minnesotans have traveled, attempted to travel, or taken steps in preparation to travel to join ISIL. The Somali Minnesotan community wants this cycle of recruitment to stop and have partnered with the U.S. Attorney's office to build a plan to stop this cycle."
U.S. Department of Justice: http://www.justice.gov/