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U.S. Slaps Terrorist Designations On Members Of Uzbek Islamist Groups

The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan is active in Afghanistan (file photo)
The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan is active in Afghanistan (file photo)
The United States has slapped terrorist designations on two members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and one member of Uzbekistan's Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), prohibiting U.S. transactions with the men and freezing all of their U.S. property interests.

U.S. State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland named the three men and explained their connections to the terrorist groups at a press conference in Washington on January 26.

"The brothers Yassin and Monir Chouka are fighters, recruiters, facilitators, and propagandists for the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan," Nuland said.

"Mevlut Kar is also a facilitator for the Islamic Jihad Union. [The Choukas] have carried out a number of attacks of the IMU along the Afghan-Pakistan border," Nuland said.

The IJU is a splinter group from the IMU but in recent years the two have been increasingly engaged in joint activities. A security operation in the city of Osh in southern Kyrgyzstan last October led to the arrests of members of both groups.

Monir Chouka, also known as Abu Adam al-Almani (the German), is one of the IMU's German recruits and a spokesman for the group.

In October last year Chouka said the IMU was responsible for a bombing in Kabul that killed four U.S. soldiers, one Canadian solder, eight civilian ISAF employees, and four Afghans.

The Taliban also claimed responsibility for that attack.

In an audio recording released on the IMU's website in early November last year, Monir Chouka announced that 25 of the group's fighters had been killed in two drone strikes carried out in Pakistan's tribal areas on 28 October.

Mevlut Kar, listed as a dual Turkish and German citizen, is described as a "facilitator and recruiter" for the IJU.

Kar is also wanted in Lebanon for trying to establish an Al-Qaeda cell in the country.
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