American fighting in Islamic State ranks killed in Syria: Reports
WASHINGTON (AFP) - An American fighting for the Islamic State was killed over the weekend in Syria, US officials said Tuesday, underlining growing concerns about Westerners signing up for extremist groups in the Middle East.
The United States had been aware that Douglas McCain, 33, a one-time aspiring rapper and basketball fan from California, was in war-torn Syria, the White House said, confirming his death.
McCain, who converted from Christianity to Islam about a decade ago, was killed in fighting against the Al-Nusra Front, an Al-Qaeda-linked group blacklisted by the United States, US media reports said.
“We continue to use every tool we possess to disrupt and dissuade individuals from traveling abroad for violent jihad and to track and engage those who return,” National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said.