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Mexico detains US man suspected of ties to jihadists

Saturday - August 17, 2019 1:44 am , Category : WORLD
Mexico City, Aug 17 (IANS) A US citizen described by the FBI as a supporter of Islamic extremism was found among a group of migrants at a temporary detention facility in the southern border state of Chiapas, the Mexican Attorney General's Office said.
Federal officers apprehended the individual, identified only as Mohammed A., at the IMM immigration service station in Huehuetan, where migrants detained at the border are held for up to 48 hours, the AG Office said in a statement on Friday, Efe news reported.
Mohammed was the subject of an Interpol Blue Notice, issued in cases where authorities are seeking to "locate, identify or obtain information on a person of interest in a criminal investigation."
The Blue Notice originated with the Interpol office in Washington.
The FBI "has data that the foreigner probably has published support for violent jihad and radical Islam on digital platforms," according to the statement.
Mohammed is to be flown to Washington, the AG Office said, though without specifying the date and time of his deportation.
In the meantime, he will remain at the facility in Huehuetan.
Starting in June, the Mexican government has substantially increased the presence of security forces along the country's southern border with Guatemala.
The responsibility for securing the border lies mainly with Mexico's National Guard.
Though President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who took office Dec. 1, originally conceived of the National Guard as a new public-safety force to suppress violent crime, he has been compelled to re-purpose the body for border protection.
The past year has seen a stream of people fleeing poverty and violence in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras make their way across Mexico to the US border and file applications for asylum, raising the ire of President Donald Trump..
The US detained more than 132,000 immigrants in May at its southern border, a 30 percent increase compared with April and the largest one-month total since 2006.
Faced with threats by Trump to levy tariffs on all Mexican imports if Mexico didn't halt the northward flow of migrants, Lopez Obrador agreed in June to send the National Guard to the Guatemalan border.

--IANS rt/