From Islamic State victim to terrorist hunter | DW Documentary
Omer Kuzu left the United States in 2014 with his brother and worked for a terrorist group for several years. &# 171; Islamic State
A US citizen who came to Syria to fight for a self-proclaimed «caliphate» terrorist group «Islamic State», pleaded guilty to terrorism charges one year after his return to the United States.
The Justice Department on Wednesday announced that 23-year-old Omer Kuzu has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists. Cuz, born in Dallas, faces up to 20 years in prison. He should be sentenced in January 2021.
«The accused, a radical US citizen, swore allegiance to a brutal terrorist group and traveled halfway across the world to pursue his goal, prosecutor Erin Neely Cox said in a statement.».
According to court records, Kuzu admitted that in October 2014, together with his brother, he left the United States, against the wishes of his parents, to join IS. Brothers with dual citizenship of the United States and Turkey flew to Istanbul, from where they were transported to Syria.
According to Kuzu, after arriving in Syria, they were taken to the Iraqi city of Mosul, where the terrorists had a training base..
Back in Syria, Kuzu swore allegiance to then-IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and began working for the terrorist group’s telecommunications department, repairing telecommunications equipment for militants and earning $ 125 a month..
Kuzu was captured by the Syrian Democratic Forces last March along with 400 other IS militants near the Syrian village of Dashisha, according to authorities. Kuzu told the American investigation that he has a wife and a child. The fate of his family and his sibling remains unclear.
Since 2017, the United States has removed eight IS-related adults and 10 children from Syria and Iraq. Mohamad Jamal Hweiss from Virginia was convicted of terrorism charges. Samantha Elhassani pleaded guilty last November.
Charges against three more people are pending.
«The Justice Department continues to seek to hold accountable those who left this country to join ISIS, Assistant Attorney General John Demers said Wednesday. take responsibility for their citizens who went to support IS».
Syrian democratic forces continue to hold about 2,000 foreign fighters in temporary prisons in northeastern Syria. About 10 thousand more women and children with foreign citizenship are in camps for displaced persons.