An al Shabaab commander captured on Sunday in a joint operation between security services of two Somali states is suspected to be a United States resident.
Abdirazaq Husain Tahliil alias Ina Alool Geel was arrested together with four others by the Puntland and Galmudug security forces for their involvement in terrorist attacks, local media report.
According to a CNN report, two US defense officials said Tahlil is a legal resident of the United States and he recently traveled to the country.
It added that the al Shabaab commander is not a citizen of the United States.
US security forces are reported to have advised during the joint security operation that resulted in the capture of Tahlil who was sentenced in 2013 to death by a Somali military court for possession of explosives in Galkayo.
He was released in January 2014 after a pardon by the president in exchange for abducted residents, local media report.
No official statement has been released by both the Somali local authorities or the US government.
Al Shabaab has been able to carry out deadly bombings despite losing most of its territory to African Union peacekeepers supporting the Somali government.
The group’s insurgency aims to drive out the peacekeepers, topple Somalia’s western-backed government and impose its strict version of Islam on the Horn of Africa state.