PORT-OF-SPAIN – The Trinidad and Tobago government said on Monday it has confirmed that 89 citizens of the twin-island nation have traveled to the Middle East in the last three years to join Islamic State.
Of that total, 35 are adult males, National Security Minister Edmund Dillon said in a radio broadcast, adding that several of those Trinidadian fighters have been killed.
IS poses “no threat to Trinidad and Tobago right now,” he said, though he acknowledged the government cannot bar the jihadists from returning to the Caribbean nation.
“For now, they’re still Trinidad and Tobago citizens,” Dillon said.
He assured the public that authorities are monitoring returnees from the Middle East.
One of Dillon’s predecessors, Gary Griffith, and former National Operations Center chief Garvin Heerah are among the voices calling for legislation to prevent the IS recruits from coming home.
Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi said in a radio broadcast that he has reached out to foreign governments and international agencies to track people who leave Trinidad and Tobago bound for the Middle East to join IS.
“We’ll apply existing anti-terrorism laws in tracking and monitoring of alleged foreign terrorist fighters from Trinidad and Tobago, and specifically cases concerning potential returns,” Al-Rawi said.