Arrest of eight Tajikistan nationals believed to have connections to ISIS has heightened concerns that a potential attack on US soil is possible

ICE-Badge-on-Uniform The badge of a US Immigration and Customs Enforcement's officer is seen in 2020. In June 2024, federal agents arrested eight Tajikistan nationals believed to have connections to ISIS. Lucy Nicholson/Reuters/Fil

Ecclesiastes 5:8 If you see the poor oppressed in a district, and justice and rights denied, do not be surprised at such things; for one official is eyed by a higher one, and over them both are others higher still

Important Takeaways:

  • Members of the group initially entered the US at the southern border and requested asylum under US immigration law. It’s unclear whether they entered at the same time and place.
  • By the time intelligence collected on overseas ISIS targets connected the men to the terror group, they had already been vetted by immigration authorities and allowed into the country, officials said.
  • Though there is no hard evidence indicating they were sent to the US as part of a terror plot, at least some of the Tajik nationals had expressed extremist rhetoric in their communications, either on social media or in direct private communications
  • After a period of surveillance, federal officials in recent days faced a difficult decision: whether to continue surveilling the men in order to determine if they were part of any potential plot or wider terrorist network, or to move in and take them off the street.
  • The men remain in federal custody on immigration charges and will eventually be deported following the counterterror investigation into them.

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