MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A suicide bombing carried out in Syria may have been pulled off by a man who grew up in South Florida.
U.S. officials tell The Associated Press the man is Moner Mohammad Abusalha. The officials are not authorized to speak on the record and requested anonymity.
The suicide attack is believed to be the first such attack since the start of the Syrian civil war in which an American has been involved.
CBS News reported he was a naturalized U.S. citizen who had been living in South Florida.
He is believed to be in his 20s and goes by the name Abu Huray Ra Al-Amriki.
Al-Qaeda linked militants claim Al-Amriki carried out the attack on Sunday, May 25th by driving a truck loaded with ammunition.
U.S. intelligence agents have reportedly been monitoring his activities since he went to the Middle East several months ago.
An Al Qaeda linked group recently released a picture showing militant fighters — including a man who appears to be Al-Amriki.
A video from the group shows the preparations for the attack and the resulting explosion at a government complex.
“It’s unfortunate to see that this young american did that,” said Nezar Hamze, the operations director for the Council on American Islamic Relations in Florida (CAIR).
He said the organization is not aware of Al-Amriki.
He also said CAIR educates people about the right way to intervene in conflicts like the civil war raging in Syria.
“The right way is to go to our elected officials and to express the concern. Share the stories on the ground of what’s happening in Syria …. people’s family’s are being killed,” said Hamze.
Hamze said Syrians living in South Florida are deeply affected by the violence and want to see the United States government take a stand.
He also said some South Floridians who support the revolutionaries trying to topple the government of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad have received threats from those in South Florida who support the Assad regime.
“This is happening in South Florida that pro-Assad supporters are giving death threats to anti-Assad revolutionaries ….revolutionary supporters here in South Florida. Obviously,we report that to the authorities and they are investigating, said Hamze.
(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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