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ISIS Recruiters Arrested in ex-Soviet Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Tajikistan-Afghanistan border | Reuters

Moscow – Former Soviet-state Kyrgyzstan announced that its security services have arrested a recruiter rallying people to join the ranks of international terrorism.

Most of those enrolled would later be sent to fight in war-torn Syria.

“Within the framework of the GKNB’s anti-terror measures, aimed neutralizing clandestine terrorist cells… in the territory of Kyrgyzstan’s Osh region, an active member of the Jama’at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad international terrorist group, the country’s national, M.M., born in 1977, was detained,” the press service of the Kyrgyz State Committee for National Security (GKNB) said in a Thursday statement.

The statement added that the detained person had recruited and sent Kyrgyzstan’s nationals to “the Syrian-Iraqi zone of an armed conflict” to carry out terrorist activities.

More so, the detainee will face serious charges for “recruiting mercenaries” and “inciting national, ethnic, religious, or regional strife.”

According to Kyrgyzstan’s law enforcement agencies, more than 500 Kyrgyz nationals are fighting on behalf of terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq.

Over the last year, Kyrgyz security forces revealed that over 200 recruitments took place in Kyrgyzstan and were dispatched abroad.

Kyrgyz courts, and last year issued about 20 rulings related to recruiting mercenaries in terrorist groups.

Kyrgyzstan neighboring country, Tajikistan, recently ended the trial of an ISIS recruiter.

A Dushanbe court sentenced the offender to 15 years in prison.

Tajik public prosecution disclosed information on how the ISIS recruiter was greatly influenced by his visit to the city of St. Petersburg in Russia.

Largely affected by ISIS ideology propagated through social media, the recruiter is believed to have recruited eight Tajik nationals and sent them to fight in Syria, at his own expense.

Information released by the Tajik interior ministry shows that security forces over the past year have dismantled 34 terror rings, and arrested 169 of its members, all of which were nationals who either joined the ranks of ISIS or ex-al Qaeda offshoot, al-Nusra Front .

It is worth mentioning that, Gulmurod Khalimov, lieutenant-colonel and former commander of the Tajik ministry of interior police special forces has defected and joined ISIS since 2015.