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NALCHIK, July 25. /ITAR-TASS/. More than 60 natives of Russia’s North Caucasus Kabardino-Balkar republic are active in illegal groups abroad, local security service chief Sergei Kmenny said on Friday.
Web propaganda and recruitment lured an average of 30 people a year to the illegal groups.
“Twenty criminal cases have been launched since 2012. Foreign emissaries recruit the republic’s youth to the military conflict in Syria on the side of the so-called opposition,” said Kmenny.
The youth sought to compensate for the lack of knowledge on the Internet, where Islamic fundamentalism led active propaganda of views contravening religious views of the republic’s main population, security chief added. Young people were trained in Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt, the latter having the most negative influence on the students.
The military confrontation with the government forces in Syria killed five Kabardians.
“In all likelihood, we can expect a come-back of well trained and ideologically motivated militants who will help establish underground in the republic,” Kmenny said.
A total of 127 Islamic religious organizations registered in the republic comprise the central organization Spiritual Board of Muslims; 140 mosques are active in the region with 12% of imams with a degree and 65% with just a three-month course certificate.
To make matters worse, Abu Hanifa Islamic Institute in the capital Nalchik trains less than 20 imams a year, which is inadequate to provide all cities and districts of the republic.