US man funded Al-Shabab terror recruit: Witness
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - An American who travelled to Somalia to train with the terror group Al-Shabab testified on Thursday against a Minnesota man accused of helping arrange the travel.
Abdifatah Yusuf Isse told jurors that he saw Mahamud Said Omar hand US$500 (S$614) in cash to another Al-Shabab recruit and wish him good luck during a meeting at a Minneapolis restaurant in 2007. The meeting occurred before Isse and several other men departed for Somalia, said Isse, who said the cash was pocket money.
Isse testified that the meeting came near the end of a string of private meetings at a Minneapolis mosque, other restaurants and in cars, in which participants discussed traveling to Somalia and waging "jihad" against Ethiopian soldiers seen as invaders of their homeland.
Omar, 46, is charged with five terror-related counts in a federal trial that is part of a broader investigation into recruiting by Al-Shabab, a United States (US)-designated terror group linked to Al-Qaeda at the centre of much of the violence in Somalia.