Syrian-trained terror suspect detained in Kyrgyzstan

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BISHKEK (TCA) — Kyrgyzstan’s National Security Committee said on February 16 it had caught a would-be suicide attacker in a counter-terrorist raid that targeted a cell trained in Syria, Sputnik news agency reported.

The 26-year-old Kyrgyz national was charged with “participation in armed conflicts or military action in a foreign territory, or receiving terrorist or extremist training,” and “mercenary activity,” the Committee said.

The Interior Ministry of Kyrgyzstan estimates more than 500 citizens have joined international terrorist groups operating in Syria and Iraq. Dozens of Kyrgyz men have been charged with fighting as mercenaries abroad.

In December, the Kyrgyz National Security Committee detained another militant who took part in hostilities in Syria and tried to subsequently sneak into Russia, the Committee said.

Citizens of former Soviet republics such as Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, with a predominantly Muslim population, are among the main targets of terrorist recruiters, including those of the Daesh terrorist group.

President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbai Jeenbekov stated last year that the spread of the Daesh ideology was intensifying, stressing the need for security cooperation among the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) members.

In addition, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said earlier that the Central Asian countries might become the next target of the Daesh terrorists after Afghanistan, adding that Russia, jointly with the countries of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), was preparing plans to counter this threat.

Sergey Kwan

TCA