Two young men in Arizona, both Somali refugees, were arrested trying to leave the U.S. to join ISIS. Their backup plan – if they had been unable to leave – was to carry out an attack on American soil, specifically a truck ramming.
Ahmed Mohamed, 21, and Abdi Hussein, 20, were arrested by the FBI after buying tickets to Egypt and boarding a plane in Tucsan, Arizona. From Egypt, they intended to travel to the Sinai Peninsula to join ISIS, according to the Justice Department.
A year ago, Mohamed began talking on a social media platform with an undercover FBI employee who he believed was also an ISIS supporter. By December, he was also communicating with another undercover agent on a different platform.
“If I go to Syria, I want to be the beheading person wallahi this kuffar. I want to kill them so many. I am thirsty their blood,” Mohamed said, according to court documents. The FBI also noted that Mohamed met with the undercover agent several times in Tucson. He also brought Hussein to one of those meetings.
Mohamed also then suggested he might carry out an attack in America using a truck. He also suggested he wanted to blow up the White House.
At one of the meetings, the FBI reported that Hussein mentioned he wanted “to be on the front line” and “kill so many people.”
Mohamed and Hussein came to the United States as Somali refugees. At the time of his arrest, Mohamed was a legal permanent resident, even though he had planned to travel on his Refugee Travel Document. Hussein still had refugee status.