The U.S. Homeland Security chief has flatly denied that ISIS members crossed the Mexican border into Texas – as conservative lawmakers claimed – but did admit that four Kurdish terrorists did slip through.
DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson was forced to deny that 10 people linked to ISIS had entered Texas after Republican Representative Duncan Hunter made the startling claim on Fox News on Tuesday.
But on Thursday, Johnson conceded that four members the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, known as the PKK, were arrested in September trying to enter the United States illegally from Mexico.
The PKK, a separatist group in Turkey, is deemed a ‘foreign terrorist organization’ by the U.S. government – but it has allied itself with other Kurdish groups fighting ISIS.
In his speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Johnson noted that the PKK was ‘actually fighting against ISIL and defended Kurdish territory in Iraq’.
They had been arrested for unlawful entry, detained and would be deported by U.S. authorities, he said in a speech in Washington.
But in an interview with CBS News, Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah stood by his concerns, noting that the PKK has been designated a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department.
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