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Russia's FSB Says 'Dismantled' Financing Ring for Syrian Militant Group

Russian security agents detain a person accused of helping finance Khatiba al-Tawhid wal-Jihad. FSB

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) said Monday that it has “dismantled” a financing ring for a Syrian militant group.

“As a result of the activities carried out in 22 Russian regions, 49 members of a terrorist network involved in the collection and transfer of funds for the needs of militants operating in Syria were detained,” the FSB said in a statement.

In addition to providing financial support to the al-Qaida-linked group Khatiba al-Tawhid wal-Jihad, which Russia considers a terrorist organization, those detained were accused of disseminating “radical Islamic ideology” online.

The FSB said it was continuing an investigation into the group but did not provide further details.

The United Nations has also designated Khatiba al-Tawhid wal-Jihad as a terrorist organization, saying it numbers around 500 fighters in Syria and cooperates with other militant groups, including the al-Nusrah Front and the Islamic Jihad Group.

According to the UN’s designation, the al-Qaida-linked group was responsible for a suicide bombing attack against the Chinese embassy in Kyrgyzstan's capital of Bishkek in 2016.

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