Kahn secures funding in House bill to combat terrorist recruitment

State Rep. Phyllis Kahn (DFL- 60B) has successfully offered an amendment to the House public safety policy and finance bill that includes $250,000 to fight terrorism recruitment.

The funding comes after U.S. Attorney for Minnesota Andy Luger announced charges Monday against six Minnesota men for conspiring to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) — a foreign terrorist organization.

Four of the defendants were arrested in Minneapolis and two arrested in San Diego, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

“As described in the criminal complaint, these men worked over the course of the last 10 months to join ISIL,” Luger said. “Even when their co-conspirators were caught and charged, they continued to seek new and creative ways to leave Minnesota to fight for a terror group. I applaud the hard work and tireless efforts of the FBI Minneapolis Division and their colleagues around the country.”

Kahn’s amendment would allocate the $250,000 to the Department of Public Safety for efforts to deter Minnesotans from joining ISIS and al-Shabaab.

“In light of the recent news that six young men were arrested for planning to join ISIS, this investment couldn’t be timelier,” Kahn said. “This funding will go a long way in bolstering the collaboration between community groups and government agencies in developing strategies to combat terrorism.  Under this bill we’ll be able to better understand the appeal and recruitment tools used to lure young men into terrorism and develop an effective response so more misguided youth aren’t tricked into becoming terrorists.”

The House Ways and Means Committee approved the public safety and finance bill Tuesday. Next it will go before the full House for a floor vote and then on to the Senate for consideration.