The FBI said Tuesday it needs help identifying people who have traveled or plan to travel overseas to engage in combat alongside terrorist groups such as the Islamic State. The public plea for help is part of an ongoing international campaign to stop so-called foreign terrorist fighters amid growing concerns that Western militants are plotting attacks against the U.S. or its allies.
The FBI also wants information about an English-speaking man featured in a propaganda video released last month by the Islamic State. In the video, the masked man speaks in English and Arabic and is seen standing in front of purported prisoners as they dig their own graves. Tips can be submitted here.
“We’re hoping that someone might recognize this individual and provide us with key pieces of information,” said Michael Steinbach, assistant director of the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division, in a statement on the FBI's website. “No piece of information is too small.”
FBI Chief James Comey said last month that authorities had identified the masked executioner in the Islamic State beheading videos of U.S. journalists Steven Sotloff and James Foley and British hostages David Haines and Alan Henning. Comey has said about a dozen Americans are known to be fighting in Syria with the militant group also known as ISIS and ISIL.
“These homegrown violent extremists are troubled souls who are seeking meaning in some misguided way,” Comey said during an interview aired Sunday on "60 Minutes." “And so they come across the propaganda and they become radicalized on their own independent study, and they're also able to equip themselves with training again on the Internet, and then engage in jihad after emerging from their basement.”
The United Nations Security Council passed a legally binding resolution last month obligating member states to prosecute militants at home and share information about potential terrorist recruits with the international community. U.N. Security Council Resolution 2178 defines foreign terrorist fighters as "individuals who travel to a state other than their states of residence or nationality for the purpose of the perpetration, planning, or preparation of, or participation in, terrorist acts or the providing or receiving of terrorist training, including in connection with armed conflict."
Watch the ISIS propaganada video below: