The FBI alerted state and local authorities Monday to be on the lookout for 11 Egyptian exchange students who arrived in the U.S. last month but never showed up for class.
The men, who range in age from 18 to 22, were scheduled to attend a month-long program in U.S. history and culture, plus English language instruction, at Montana State University along with six other students. The group flew from Cairo and arrived in the U.S. on July 29. All entered the U.S. legally, but officials said the no-shows violated the terms of their visas and that the government would likely send them home once they turn up.
FBI Special Agent Richard Kolko emphasized that there was no indication that the men were involved in any illicit activity.
"At this point, all they have done is not show up for a scheduled academic program," Kolko said. "There is no threat associated with these men."
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement would not disclose the names of the 11, but revealed that they were students registered at Mansoura University in Mansoura, Egypt.
The government tightened the student visa process after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks when it learned that four of the hijackers had entered the country on foreign student visas.
Montana State has tried repeatedly to contact the students, university spokeswoman Cathy Conover said. When that failed, the school notified Homeland Security officials and registered the Egyptians as "no-shows" in the system developed after Sept. 11 to track foreign students.
"We hope this doesn't cast doubt on this program because we think it's important to have international students on our campus and in our community," Conover said.
FOX News' Ian McCaleb, FOXNews.com's C. Spencer Beggs and The Associated Press contributed to this report.