Somali militant from Minnesota surrenders in Somalia


A Twin Cities man who joined the terrorist group al-Shabab in Somalia seven years ago has surrendered to authorities in the African country, the State Department said Monday.

Mohamed Abdullahi Hassan, also known as Mujahid Miski, turned himself in to the government on Nov. 6 in Mogadishu, Somalia's capital city, according to statement the State Department sent to several media outlets including MPR NewsKSTP and the Associated Press.

Hassan has been identified as one of the group's most active recruiters and uses social media to spread his extremist beliefs, according to KSTP.

The Counter Extremism Project's David Ibsen has called Hassan one of the most influential terror recruiters on Twitter.

Hassan, although part of al-Shabab, is a supporter of ISIS, and has been accused of helping recruit other Minnesotans to join the militant group, reports note.

Hassan reportedly contacted the two people responsible for the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California last week.

And he also reportedly used social media to call for an attack against a contest in Garland, Texas, in May, where participants drew cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad.

Hassan attended Roosevelt High School in Minneapolis. He left for Somalia in 2008 to join al-Shabab when he was 17 years old, and was indicted on federal terrorism charges a year later.

Hassan was born in Somalia. He is a "lawful permanent resident" of the United States, but is not a citizen, the State Department said. The U.S. doesn't have an extradition agreement with Somalia, so it's unclear what the next steps will be in his case.

"The U.S. Mission to Somalia is discussing this case with the Somali Federal Government," the statement continued. "We do not have any further details on the discussions at this time."

MPR News published a profile of Hassan shortly after the Texas incident, and there's more about his activity on social media from the Anti-Defamation League.

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