King announces third hearing on Muslim radicalization in US

The chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security on Tuesday announced a third hearing on Islamic radicalization in America.

Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) said the hearing will take place on July 27. It is titled, "Al Shabaab: Recruitment and Radicalization within the Muslim American Community and the Threat to the Homeland."

“At this hearing, the third in a series, we will examine Somalia-based terrorist organization al-Shabaab’s ongoing recruitment, radicalization, and training of young Muslim-Americans and al-Shabaab’s linking up with al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)," King said in a statement announcing the hearing.

The first hearing focused on the general radicalization of Muslim Americans; the second was on Muslim radicalization in American prisons.

King's hearings have been lightning rods for harsh criticism from liberals and civil rights groups, who have charged that the sessions are discriminatory and racially motivated.

"What I disagree with, and I would say again with all respect to the chairman, is the scope of this committee's only focusing on one particular group. I actually believe that the focus of one particular group on the basis of race or religion can be deemed as racist and as discriminatory," Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Calif.) said during the second hearing in June.

King has strongly defended the hearings, saying that there would be hearings on other groups if the threat of terrorism in America were posed by some force other than Islamic terrorism.

"The purpose of this committee is to combat Islamic terrorism because that is the terrorist threat to this country. If we find out that neo-Nazis are allied with a foreign power and they come into this country, we will investigate it," King said at the same hearing.

The witness list for the third hearing has yet to be announced.