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Five Americans arrested in Pakistan: Are more US citizens joining jihad?

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ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN – The arrest of five Americans in Pakistan seeking to join jihad has drawn further attention to a trend of Westerners coming here to sit at the feet of veteran Islamist fighters, then plot terror attacks at home or wherever else their passports allow them to travel.

But Wednesday’s arrests also show that Pakistani authorities are paying more attention to the threat and taking steps to clamp down, even if they are not taking on the local jihadi groups themselves.

The five US citizens – three of them of Pakistani origin – were arrested Wednesday in a home linked to militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), in the town of Sargodha in southern Punjab Province.

The arrests are just the latest evidence of American Muslims seeking to use militant training received in Pakistan to plot or help execute terror attacks. American David Headley pled not guilty in a Chicago courtroom on Wednesday to charges he scouted locations for last year’s Mumbai terror attack, which killed 174 people. Najibullah Zazi, arrested in September, faces trial for allegedly plotting a bomb attack in New York.

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