ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack in a Minnesota mall in which a terrorist made several references to Allah during the attack and was shot dead after stabbing nine people.
The Islamic State (ISIS) affiliated Amaq News Agency reported Sunday that the terrorist who stabbed and wounded nine people during an attack at the Crossroads Center shopping mall in St. Cloud, Minnesota on Saturday was an ISIS “soldier.”
The “operation” was carried out in response “to calls to target the citizens of countries belonging to the crusader coalition,” Amaq stated
The terrorist, a Somali immigrant, was armed with a knife and wearing a private security firm uniform at the time of the attack.
He made several “references to Allah” during the attack and asked at least one person whether she was Muslim before attacking her.
He was shot dead by an off-duty police officer.
None of the victims, seven men, one woman and a 15-year-old girl, suffered life-threatening wounds.
Authorities are investigating the stabbings as an act of terrorism — a finding that would realize long-held fears of an attack in the immigrant-rich state that has struggled to stop the recruiting of its men by Muslim terror groups, including ISIS.
Leaders of the Somali community in Minnesota on Sunday condemned the attack. They said the suspect, identified as 22-year-old Dahir A. Adan, does not represent them, and they expressed fear about a backlash.
Minnesota has the nation’s largest Somali community, with a population of some 40,000.
More than 20 men have left since 2007 to join the Muslim al-Shabab group in Somalia, and roughly a dozen people have left in recent years to join Muslim militants in Syria. In addition, nine Minnesota men face sentencing on terror charges for plotting to join ISIS.
The possibility of an attack on US soil has been a major concern for law enforcement. Stopping the recruiting has been a high priority, with law enforcement investing in community outreach and the state participating in a federal project aimed at combating radical messages.
If Saturday’s stabbings are ultimately deemed a terrorist act, it would be the first carried out by a Somali on US soil.
St. Cloud Mayor David Kleis said an attack like Saturday’s is the type of worry that keeps him “up at night.”
By: World Israel News Staff
AP contributed to this report.