Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Wednesday that Syria is becoming a ‘huge magnet’ for extremists to train and engage in combat.
"Syria has become a huge magnet for extremists. First those groups who are engaged in Syria itself, some 1600 different groups. We estimate somewhere in the neighborhood of between 75,000 and 110,000 of which about 26,000 we grade as extremists. We estimate at this point in excess of 7,000 foreign fighters have been attracted from some 50 countries, many of them in Europe and the Mideast," Clapper said.
"There is tremendous concern here for those extremists who are attracted to Syria, engage in combat, get training, and we're seeing now the appearance of training complexes in Syria to train people to go back to their countries, and, of course, conduct more terrorist acts. So this is a huge concern to all of us," Clapper added.