Manhattan truck assault shines highlight on terror menace in Uzbekistan and Central Asia – Nationwide


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The Uzbek nationwide accused of mowing down folks with a truck in New York Metropolis has renewed concern about the specter of terrorism posed by nations in Central Asia.

U.S. officers recognized Sayfullo Saipov, who legally immigrated from Uzbekistan in 2010, because the alleged attacker who drove a truck into a number of cyclists alongside a well-liked bike path close to the World Commerce Heart, killing eight and injuring one other 12. The 29-year-old was shot within the stomach by police after he exited the car carrying air weapons and yelling “God is nice” in Arabic, authorities stated.

READ MORE: eight useless after truck hits cyclists in New York Metropolis ‘act of terror’

Officers allege he left behind handwritten notes pledging his loyalty to the so-called Islamic State.

Safety consultants say that Uzbekistan, a majority-Muslim nation situated north of Afghanistan, and different nations like Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan have lengthy had points with home extremism.

“There’s no query that [Uzebekistan and central Asian countries] are disproportionately represented within the overseas fighter phenomenon with the Islamic State,” stated former CSIS analyst Phil Gurski.

WATCH: Witnesses describe seeing our bodies laying on the street after NYC truck assault

Gurski, president and CEO of Borealis Risk and Threat Consulting, says the authoritarian governments have exacerbated the issue of terrorism in Central Asia, particularly in Uzbekistan. The nation’s most infamous jihadist group is the Islamic Motion of Uzbekistan, which has moved from supporting al-Qaida to aligning itself with ISIS in recent times.

“You do have this large space of the world that’s clearly a situation of nice unrest, you’ve acquired repressive regimes, you have got hyperlinks to the Islamic State,” he stated.

A 2015 report from the Worldwide Disaster Group stated a repressive political surroundings mixed with a struggling financial system has led to rising numbers of Central Asians residents, female and male, travelling to the Center East to assist the so-called Islamic State.

READ MORE: Terrorism has developed from bombs and planes, to vehicles and knives

“Prompted partly by political marginalization and bleak financial prospects that characterize their post-Soviet area, 2,000-Four,000 have prior to now three years turned their again on their secular states to hunt a radical various,” the report stated. “The attraction of jihadism within the area can be rooted in an unfulfilled need for political and social change.”

There was a latest string of assaults linked to Uzbek nationals. On Jan. 1, an Uzbek gunman opened hearth at a nightclub in Istanbul, killing 39 folks.

In April, an Uzbek man born in Kyrgyzstan blew up a subway practice in Russia killing at the very least 14 folks. Additionally in April, an Uzbek citizen was arrested in Sweden after he drove a truck right into a crowd in Stockholm, killing 4 folks.

READ MORE: A timeline of auto assaults from 2006 to now

In 2015, two Uzbeks and a Kazakh have been arrested in Brooklyn and charged with conspiring to assist ISIS.

Nonetheless, Gurski cautioned about drawing a direct hyperlink between Uzbekistan and the assault in Manhattan.

“When this gentleman got here to the states in 2010 there’s nothing that I’m conscious of that ought to have flagged him as an extremist,” he stated.

U.S. authorities have stated Saipov entered the U.S. legally beneath the Range Visa Program. Information point out he was a business truck driver who launched two companies in Ohio and had pushed for ride-hailing firm Uber.

“Did he come to the States having been radicalized in Uzbekistan or did he come to the States as a traditional immigrant?” Gurski stated. “That’s the query we don’t know.”

U.S. President Donald Trump seized on the assault to criticize the nation’s immigration legal guidelines, however New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo stated the suspect was radicalized within the U.S. and known as him a “wicked coward” who tried to create terror.

“He was related to ISIS and he was radicalized domestically,” he advised CNN. “It’s not the primary time. It’s a worldwide phenomenon now.”

In the meantime, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev stated Wednesday that Uzbekistan was prepared to make use of “all its assets” to assist examine the New York assault.

— With recordsdata from Reuters

© 2017 World Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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