Tunisia scored a victory in its pushback against the Islamic State, which is seeking to expand from its North African stronghold in Libya, by taking down an ISIS terrorist cell operating on the Libyan border.
According to Reuters, the cell was involved with “recruiting fighters for ISIS in Libya.” The Tunisian law enforcement action comes as part of a crackdown initiated after Islamist militants attacked the border town of Ben Guerdan earlier this month.
“Our counter-terrorism unit forces dismantled a cell which included 12 extremists who were recruiting young people to send into Libya to join Daesh,” said the Tunisian Interior Ministry, using another name for ISIS. The Interior Ministry said the cell was also involved in the attack on Ben Guerdan.
Islamist recruiting has been a major concern for Tunisia, as its “Arab Spring” revolution turns sour. Another terrorist recruiting cell busted in December was working to recruit “jihad brides” for militants in Syria.
Tunisia has been under a state of emergency since an ISIS suicide bombing in November. On Tuesday, President Beji Caid Essebsi extended the state of emergency for another three months, preserving a number of emergency powers for his government.