Twin Cities teen pleads guilty to trying to join Islamic State in Syria


A teenager from Minnesota accused of attempting to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State extremist group pleaded guilty in federal court.

The Associated Press reports Abdullahi Yusuf, 18, revealed he attended meetings in Minnesota last spring in which participants discussed fighting against Syrian President Bashar Assad.

He was stopped by FBI agents in May as he tried to board a plane bound for Turkey at Minneapolis-Saint Paul International, and on Thursday pleaded guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization.

MPR reports that Yusuf told Chief U.S. District Judge Michael Davis he played a "minor role" in the conspiracy.

Yusuf's failed attempt to travel to the Middle East came six days before another Minnesota man, 20-year-old Abi Nur, was successful in boarding a plane at MSP and is believed to have made it to Syria.

Yusuf is one of a number of Somali-Americans from Minnesota thought to have attempted or succeeded in joining up extremist groups in Syria or Somalia.

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