US charges six over Iraq-Syria `terrorist` links
The US Department of Justice said Friday six people had been charged over an alleged attempt to send money and military supplies to militant groups in Iraq and Syria, including to IS jihadists.
Washington: The US Department of Justice said Friday six people had been charged over an alleged attempt to send money and military supplies to militant groups in Iraq and Syria, including to IS jihadists.
According to the indictment, which was made public on Friday, five of the defendants are in the United States and have been arrested, while a sixth is overseas. They are charged with conspiracy to provide support to terrorist organizations.
All six people had immigrated to the United States from Bosnia and three had become US citizens.
The Justice Department alleged one member of the group travelled to Syria and Iraq to support a terrorist organization while the other five members solicited donations and transferred money to the groups.
The indictment said numerous "foreign terrorist organizations" were to be aided by the scheme, including al Qaeda in Iraq and the Islamic State organization.
US-based members of the conspiracy are also accused of shipping military supplies such as uniforms, combat boots and "tactical gear" to the organizations, the government said.
"Preventing the provision of supplies, money, and personnel to foreign terrorist organizations like ISIL remains a top priority," Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Carlin said in a statement.
Two suspects were also charged with "conspiring to kill and maim persons in a foreign country." It was not clear when the charges were laid.
If convicted, the accused face 15 years imprisonment and fines of up to $250,000.
The chair of the US House of Representatives intelligence committee hailed the charges and said they drew attention to Islamic State supporters on US soil.
"ISIL presents a growing threat not only in Syria and Iraq, but throughout the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and now in the United States," Congressman Devin Nunes said in a statement using another name for the Islamic State group.
The Justice Department named the six people as Ramiz Zijad Hodzic, his wife Sedina Unkic Hodzic and Armin Harcevic of Missouri; Nihad Rosic from New York; and Mediha Medy Salkicevic and Jasminka Ramic of Illinois.