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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Al-Shabaab threatens malls in Canada, UK, U.S. in new video - CNN.com

Al-Shabaab threatens malls in Canada, UK, U.S. in new video - CNN.com

Terror group Al-Shabaab has released a video calling for attacks on shopping malls in Canada, the UK and the United States.

In the propaganda video released Saturday, the al Qaeda-linked terror group talks about its September 2013 attack on a mall in Kenya. The brazen siege, which went on for days, left more than 60 people dead at an upscale mall in Nairobi.

In its new video, the terror group calls for similar attacks on malls in the three countries. Al-Shabaab identified specific malls, but CNN will not list them unless they respond publicly.

Mall of America said it's aware of the threatening video that named it as a potential target.

"We take any potential threat seriously and respond appropriately," the Minnesota mall said in a statement Saturday night. "We have implemented extra security precautions, some may be noticeable to guests and others won't be."

The West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Canada, which was also listed, said it has implemented extra security and is working with federal and local law enforcement agencies.

The Somalia-based militants have heavily recruited in Minneapolis, where young men have been slipping away to join the terror group. The city is home to the largest Somali population in the United States.

Although Al-Shabaab has also targeted youth in Canada, Finland and the UK for recruitment, its past attacks have been limited to East Africa.

In addition to Kenya and Somalia, it has also struck in Uganda, where it killed more than 70 people gathered to watch a World Cup soccer match in Kampala five years ago. Kenya and Uganda have sent their forces to neighboring Somalia to battle the extremists.

As the attacks get more daring, the international community has rallied to fight the militants.

Last year, the United States launched an airstrike in Somalia that killed the Al-Shabaab leader. The terror group later replaced him and vowed to avenge his death.

CNN's Janet DiGiacomo and Joe Sutton contributed to this report.

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