CARIBBEAN: Trinidad has highest ISIS recruitment rate in Western Hemisphere

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CARIBBEAN: Trinidad has highest ISIS recruitment rate in Western Hemisphere
Port of Spain, Trinidad
Port of Spain, Trinidad
Port of Spain, Trinidad

TV6 TRINIDAD – In an article written by The Atlantic, entitled, ‘ISIS In The Caribbean’, Trinidad and Tobago is named as the country with the highest recruitment rates in the Western Hemisphere.

Referencing a story done by TV6’s Mark Bassant, the article went on to explain that the reason so many recruits were able to leave Trinidad to join ISIS, was because no one was stopping them simply because it was state policy.

Simon Cottee, The Atlantic article’s writer sat down with former Housing Minister Roodal Moonilal who said, “ISIS is not proscribed in T&T, meaning that you can go and train with ISIS for 2-3 years and come back here with all the rights and privileges of a citizen of T&T.”

Revealing statistics, The Atlantic says in a recent paper in the journal Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, John McCoy and W. Andy Knight posit that between 89-125 Trinidadians have joined ISIS. Moonilal, an opposition Member of Parliament in T&T, insists that the total number is considerably higher, claiming that, according to a leaked security document passed on to him, over 400 have left since 2013.

Even the figure of 125 would easily place Trinidad, with a population of 1.3 million, including 104,000 Muslims, top of the list of Western countries with the highest rates of foreign-fighter radicalization; it’s by far the largest recruitment hub in the Western Hemisphere, about a four and a half hour flight from the U.S. capital.

The article also reveals that in an ISIS magazine called Dabiq, the writer spoke with a foreign fighter of the terrorist group named, Abu Sa’d at-Trinidadi. Asked if he had a message for “the Muslims of Trinidad,” he condemned his co-religionists at home for remaining in “a place where you have no honor and are forced to live in humiliation, subjugated by the disbelievers.” More chillingly, he urged Muslims in T&T to wage jihad against their fellow citizens: “Terrify the disbelievers in their own homes and make their streets run with their blood.”

Read more on The Atlantic’s article: ISIS in the Caribbean HERE

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