Mother of Ohio at­tack sus­pect warned of ter­ror re­cruit­ment.

So­mali refugee’s mom said she feared ter­ror re­cruit­ment

The Washington Times Daily - - FRONT PAGE - BY AN­DREA NOBLE

The mother of a So­mali refugee who in­jured 11 peo­ple last month in an at­tack at Ohio State Univer­sity had told im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cials that her chil­dren were at risk of be­ing kid­napped or re­cruited by a ter­ror­ist group when she sought asy­lum for her fam­ily, ac­cord­ing to a se­na­tor ques­tion­ing the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion’s vet­ting of the man.

Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee Chair­man Charles E. Grass­ley asked about the de­gree to which im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cials had ques­tioned Ab­dul Razak Ali Ar­tan and his sib­lings about any po­ten­tial in­ter­ac­tions with or ties to al-Shabab, in a let­ter Thurs­day to the De­part­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity.

Mr. Grass­ley, Iowa Repub­li­can, wrote that records ob­tained by the com­mit­tee in­di­cated Ar­tan’s mother had writ­ten in asy­lum pa­per­work that her hus­band had been kid­napped and she feared her chil­dren would be kid­napped and re­cruited by the So­mali-based ter­ror­ist group.

“This in­for­ma­tion should have caused the asy­lum of­fi­cer to con­duct ad­di­tional ques­tion­ing of the older chil­dren to bet­ter un­der­stand ties to a group that the United States des­ig­nated as a for­eign ter­ror­ist or­ga­ni­za­tion in 2008,” Mr. Grass­ley wrote. “Fur­ther ques­tion­ing could have elim­i­nated the pos­si­bil­ity that the asylees had du­bi­ous ties to the ter­ror­ist group and could have al­lowed for more ro­bust vet­ting and data col­lec­tion. How­ever, although com­mon prac­tice in these cases, no ad­di­tional ques­tion­ing was con­ducted.”

Ar­tan, an Ohio State Univer­sity stu­dent, in­jured 11 peo­ple dur­ing a Novem­ber at­tack when he plowed a car into pedes­tri­ans, then be­gan stab­bing oth­ers with a butcher knife. A cam­pus po­lice of­fi­cer fa­tally shot Ar­tan af­ter he ig­nored or­ders to drop the knife.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors have said Ar­tan may have been in­spired by the late al Qaeda cleric An­war al-Awlaki and the Is­lamic State, but that it was too soon to defini­tively call the at­tack ter­ror­ism. Of­fi­cials have not cited any spe­cific links to al-Shabab, the East African group is aligned with al Qaeda.

Of­fi­cials said Ar­tan and his fam­ily came to the United States in 2014 af­ter liv­ing for some time in a refugee camp in Pak­istan.

Mr. Grass­ley also is seek­ing im­mi­gra­tion and crim­i­nal his­tory records for Ar­tan’s mother and his eight sib­lings, as well as doc­u­ments re­lated any in­ter­views done be­fore grant­ing her refugee sta­tus.


The mother of Ab­dul Razak Ali Ar­tan, the So­mali-born Ohio State Univer­sity stu­dent who in­jured 11 peo­ple with a ve­hi­cle and a knife last month, told im­mi­gra­tion of­fi­cials she feared So­mali ter­ror­ist groups would kid­nap and re­cruit her chil­dren.

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