Tunis – Tunisia announced on Saturday that authorities had prevented over 20,000 youths from joining terrorist organizations.
Interior Minister Hadi al-Majdoub said that since 2012 security forces succeeded in preventing over 27,000 youths from joining the ranks of these groups.
These suspects have been barred from traveling to countries witnessing armed conflicts, he explained.
He stressed that a travel ban is one of the most important methods that the Interior Ministry has adopted in thwarting youth from heading to conflict zones and getting recruited by terrorists.
Tunisian security agencies succeeded in 2016 in dismantling 245 terror cells and arresting 517 members of these networks, revealed al-Majdoub.
Moreover, he told a parliamentary committee that Libya has been a major destination for would-be terrorists, who have used the unrest in the neighboring country to later travel to Turkey where they would then be able to enter war-torn Syria.
Some 800 terrorists have returned to Tunisia and the Interior Ministry has arrested 190 of them, 137 have been barred from traveling, and 55 have been killed in armed clashes with the country’s security forces.
The rest of them are being monitored for any suspicious activity.
In addition, al-Majdoub said that there are around 3,000 Tunisian terrorists who are active abroad.
Sixty percent of them are operating in Syria, 30 percent in Libya and the rest are distributed in various areas of tension in the world. Around 760 of Tunisian terrorists have been killed abroad.