Omar Bakri Mohammed rejoices in RAF deaths in Afghanistan says he visited Islamic school raided for suicide bomber recruitment
September 29, 2006
Exiled cleric Bakri rejoices over deaths of RAF servicemen
Last updated on 11th September 2006
Omar Bakri believes the recent serviceman deaths were revenge for recent terror arrests.
Exiled radical Islamic preacher Omar Bakri has claimed the deaths of 14 British servicemen in Afghanistan were revenge for the arrest of 14 Muslims in anti-terror raids the previous day.
He added he was "happy" when the RAF Nimrod crashed killing all on board on September 2nd.
The controversial cleric said it was "so strange" that the same number of servicemen died as Muslims were arrested, adding: "Allah does certain things. People should get some lessons from it."
He went on: "I was happy at the fact that it is some of the military used to kill Muslims in Afghanistan. I would myself be happy to see them be defeated."
Bakri, 48, launched his outburst on a website believed to be read by a number of extremists. He said al Qaida was becoming more popular than ever among young Muslims and had been "more successful" than the United States since September 11.
Speaking from Beirut in Lebanon, where he has lived since being banned from Britain last August, Mr Bakri said: "Al Qaida has been able to generate many British supporters, especially among the youth.
"I said myself, if Britain are going to push these kinds of laws, they're going to have big security problems."
The preacher also revealed he had visited the Jameah Islamiyah Islamic school, being searched by anti-terrorism officers, a number of times on "camps".
He said he felt sorry for Abu Abdullah - an associated of radical cleric Abu Hamza - who has been held in the raids.
Mr Bakri said he believed Mr Abdullah was innocent of terrorist charges. "He has strong views - he speaks strongly against the British government. But he is not involved himself in any terrorist activity," he said.
Mr Bakri said there was "nothing to worry about" at the school in East Sussex.