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White House denies that an ISIS sympathizer brought terrorists across southern border

 August 30, 2023

The White House has denied any evidence that an ISIS sympathizer's smuggling ring brought terrorists into the United States.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre insisted that there is "no sign" of terrorists being smuggled into the U.S. and that the administration acted quickly to disrupt the human smuggling network once alerted by intelligence. She also stated that there is no sign that anyone moved by the smuggling network has terrorism connections, as reported by Fox News.

Intelligence alerted to smuggling network

White House correspondent Peter Doocy asked Jean-Pierre about the possibility of ISIS sympathizers helping people enter the United States.

Jean-Pierre responded to Doocy's question by stating that intelligence officials had tipped off the administration to the operations of a human smuggling network. She added that the administration acted quickly and successfully to intervene.

Jean-Pierre said:

Intelligence alerted us to a human smuggling network. We moved fast and successfully to disrupt it.

Doocy then asked if the administration knows the whereabouts of all the people this ISIS sympathizer snuck into the country.

Jean-Pierre reiterated that the administration acted swiftly and expressed gratitude to law enforcement for their quick work and vigilance.

Smugglers detained overseas

The press secretary also mentioned that smugglers linked to the foreign terrorist organization have been detained overseas.

She emphasized that there is no sign that anyone moved by the smuggling network has terrorism connections.

She further explained:

And what we were able to do as [a] precaution, people brought here by [the] smuggling network are being subject to extra vetting and are all in removal proceedings.

This response came after a report that a smuggler with ties to the terrorist organization helped bring migrants from Mexico to the U.S.

Multiple U.S. officials have said that the FBI is investigating over a dozen Uzbek nationals granted asylum via the U.S.-Mexico border.

FBI investigating potential criminal threats

The FBI is investigating over a dozen migrants from Uzbekistan and other countries who were allowed into the US after seeking asylum at the southern border with Mexico.

This investigation was initiated after US intelligence officials discovered that the migrants traveled with the help of a smuggler with ties to ISIS.

Although no specific ISIS plot has been identified as of now, the incident has raised alarm bells across the government.

FBI officials are working to "identify and assess" the individuals granted asylum, while the agency says there is no specific ISIS plot uncovered.

Two U.S. officials are closely examining a number of the migrants for potential criminal threats.

Additionally, the White House formally acknowledged that the government conclusively believes Wagner group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin was indeed assassinated by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Prigozhin, who led a short-lived rebellion against Russia's military, died along with several members of the Wagner Group's top brass.

Prigozhin's death linked to Putin

Talking about Prigozhin's death, Jean-Pierre told reporters:

It seems pretty evident what happened here.

President Biden had previously stated:

There's not much that happens in Russia that Putin is not behind.

This statement was made last week after Prigozhin was reported killed in a private plane crash.


  • The White House denies any terrorists were smuggled into the U.S. by an ISIS sympathizer.
  • The administration disrupted a human smuggling network after being alerted by intelligence.
  • Smugglers linked to a foreign terrorist organization have been detained overseas.
  • The FBI is investigating Uzbek nationals granted asylum via the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • The White House believes Russian President Vladimir Putin assassinated Wagner group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin.