DOJ extremism fight could take cue from Minnesota _lowres

This 2005 file photo released by the Hennepin County, Minn., Sheriff’s Office shows Troy Kastigar. Kastigar, was killed in Somalia in September 2009 while fighting with the terror group al-Shabab. When young men from Minneapolis began traveling to Somalia seven years ago to join a terror group in the midst of a civil war, investigators trying to stop the recruiting went straight to the city’s large Somali community to try to build trust and gain understanding. The nationwide effort to stop a new wave of Westerners being recruited, this time for Islamic State militant groups in Syria and Iraq, could take some cues from Minnesota. (AP Photo/Hennepin County, Minn., Sheriff’s Office, File)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A new, nationwide effort to obstruct the recruitment of Westerners for Islamic State militant groups in Syria and Iraq could take some cues from efforts in Minnesota to stop people from joining a terror group in Somalia.

When people began leaving Minneapolis, investigators worked to build trust with the Somali community and raise awareness of the dangers.

Now, the Justice Department is launching pilot programs to help detect American extremists who want to join terror organizations. Locations weren’t announced.

But such a program would be welcome in Minnesota, where authorities are also investigating how some people were recruited to join militants in Syria. At least one Minnesota man died fighting for the Islamic State. A federal grand jury is investigating, and several local Somalis have been subpoenaed.