Friday, November 20, 2015

Russia's Muslim communities provoke anxiety as more are tied to ISIS

THE NEW YORK TIMES
By Neil MacFarquhar
Muslim men at a mosque this month in Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan. Officials estimate that there are at least 2,000 fighters from the Caucasus among up to 7,000 recruits from Russia and the former Soviet Union now in Syria and Iraq. Credit James Hill for The New York Times
RUSSIA---Much like the disaffected Muslim communities in Europe, the Caucasus region and the swath of former Soviet republics across Central Asia have become a vital recruiting ground for the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL. Law enforcement officials estimate that there are at least 2,000 fighters from the Caucasus among up to 7,000 recruits from Russia and the former Soviet Union now in Syria and Iraq. At the same time, the Islamic State is steadily establishing a foothold in the Caucasus. It is tapping into the rage and resentment over Russia’s constant, brutal and arbitrary security presence in order to foster a new crop of homegrown, fanatical opponents to revive the insurgency that the Kremlin suppressed. [link]