Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell hitting out at an intelligence expert that made some very strong claims on an American news station on Saturday.
Malcolm Nance, a US Intel Officer while appearing as a guest as on a show hosted by MSNBC’s Joy-Ann Reid indicated that The Bahamas has very strong ties to terrorism.
“The United States has not banned terrorists from Brazil. Isis has dozens of members from Brazil or Trinidad or The Bahamas who have more terrorist members than any of those other countries,” Mr. Nance said.
A roughly 30 second clip of this audio surfaced on social media and spread like wild fire among Bahamian citizens.
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has maintained their goal is to create a caliphate (Islamic State) around the world.
The terrorist group’s main stronghold is the Syrian city of Raqqa and it also controls a number of lucrative oil fields in Syria.
ISIS has used social media and propaganda to recruit fighters from other parts of the world including the UK and Europe.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the terror attacks in Paris in November 2015 and the suicide bombings in Brussels in March 2016.
Minister Mitchell wasted no time responding to the reports over the weekend.
“Upon hearing the report, Foreign Affairs I spoke with Prime Minister Perry Chrsitie, National Security Minister Bernard Nottage , and the Head of the Security and Intelligence ( SIB) in the Royal Bahamas Police Force Emrick Seymour, all of whom are responsible for the country’s national security,” he said.
“All persons involved said they have no knowledge of any such terrorists or group of terrorists or any individual terrorist that is related to ISIS or any other terrorist organization in The Bahamas.
“The report is rubbish. The Bahamas Mission to the United States has been asked to reach out to us counterparts, to MSNBC and the Mr. Nance himself to find out what the source of the allegation is,” Mr. Mitchell said.
Mr. Nance subsequently issued an apology from his Twitter account on Sunday saying the event he had in question had been refuted.
The incident he was referencing was In March of last year, when Belgian officials identified two suicide bombers in the deadly attacks on an airport and subway station in Brussels as brothers with criminal records.
One of the brothers, 27-year-old Khalid el-Bakraoui, had been wanted by Interpol before the attacks, according to a red notice posted to the agency’s website.
Interpol listed that el-Bakraoui had dual Belgian and Bahamian nationality and had been wanted in Belgium on charges of terrorism.
The Bahamian reference was since removed.