Syria-based al Qaeda group issues threat to Western aid workers

The Islamic Sate of Iraq and Al-Sham, or ISIS, is a group of al Qaeda-linked fighters from Iraq who attacked coalition forces after the U.S. invasion. The group expanded into Syria when it became a safe haven for al Qaeda. Margaret Brennan reports.

Al Qaeda's affiliate in Syria - the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham, or ISIS - warned Western aid workers that they are at risk of kidnapping or death if they enter Syria. The directive from the terror group now officially makes many U.S.-funded organizations targets.

A State Department official told CBS News that "some of our partners" have reported receiving a warning from ISIS that Western aid workers would be in danger. The official said that so far the threat is "not yet impacting our programs given the breadth and depth of local staff and partners we have on the ground."

The United States is the largest aid donor to the refugee crisis in Syria and the surrounding countries affected by what the United Nations refers to as the worst humanitarian disaster of this century. More than a billion dollars in U.S. aid has been provided during the more than two-year war.

  • Margaret Brennan

    Margaret Brennan is moderator of CBS News' "Face The Nation" and CBS News' senior foreign affairs correspondent based in Washington, D.C.