In 2009, CAIR-MN reacted to the recruitment of Somali Muslims in the Minneapolis area by Al-Shabaab, an Al-Qaeda affiliate, by urging Muslims to only talk to law enforcement with a lawyer present because the government may violate their rights. 
Local Somali Muslims were angered by CAIR-MNâ€™s campaign, arguing that it obstructed federal investigations by making Muslims fear the authorities.
A Somali Muslim named Abdirizak Bihi, director of the Somali Education and Social Advocacy Center, organized a protest of about 50 demonstrators outside a CAIR-MN event and chanted, â€œCAIR out! Doublespeak out!â€ Bihiâ€™s nephew was recruited by Al-Shabaab and died in Somalia, where the group is based.
In 2011, CAIR-MN attacked Bihi and his Muslim colleague, Omar Jamal, as â€œanti-Muslimâ€ when they participated in a seminar that included teaching about Al-Shabaab. CAIR-MN was upset that their session described Al-Shabaab as an â€œIslamic extremist terrorist organization,â€ saying they did not â€œdistinguish between Islam and terrorism.â€
Bihi says that CAIR-MN has impeded his efforts to inform the U.S. government about Islamist radicalization for years by saying that heâ€™s bigoted and doesnâ€™t represent the Somali community.
â€œThey say that I am a bad person, that I am anti-Muslim, and that I donâ€™t represent a hundred percent the Somali community. They lie about my life most of the time and try to destroy my character, my capability and my trust in the community,â€ Bihi said.
 â€œMission, Vision,â€ CAIR-Minnesota website, https://www.cairmn.com/about-us/mission-vision.html
 â€œCAIR-MN: Protect Legal Rights of Somali Muslim Students,â€ CAIRtv YouTube channel, April 10, 2009. https://youtu.be/_L280GPqfDA
 Shah, Allie and James Walsh. â€œSomalis Take to the Street to Protest Groupâ€™s Actions,â€ Star Tribune, June 12, 2009. https://www.startribune.com/local/minneapolis/47883727.html
 â€œCAIR Slams Muslim Foes of Al-Shabaab,â€ IPT News, November 15, 2011. https://www.investigativeproject.org/3284/cair-slams-muslim-foes-of-al-shabaab
 Johnson, Charles C. â€œSomali-American Leader: â€˜I Tried to Warn Americaâ€™ about Homegrown Radicalization,â€ Daily Caller, September 23, 2013. https://dailycaller.com/2013/09/23/somali-american-leader-i-tried-to-warn-america-about-homegrown-radicalization/