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Militants in Europe openly call for Jihad and Rule of Islam:"It is foolish to fight people who want death-that is what they are looking for"

Al Muhajiroun leader urges Muslims to : Embrace Death and the Culture of Martyrdom"
by Patrick E. Tyler Don van Natta Jr.
N.Y.Times UK -World Net Daily- NRC Handelsblad
April 3, 2004

Jonathan Player for The New York TimesIshtiaq Alamgir, above, at his home in Luton, England, calls himself Sayful Islam, the sword of Islam. He is a follower of Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammad, who warns of attacks by "Muslims of the West."

Agence France-Presse—Getty

Abu Hamza, a cleric, preaches martyrdom outside a London mosque.

April 26, 2004

Militants in Europe Openly Call for Jihad and the Rule of Islam


LUTON, England, April 24 — The call to jihad is rising in the streets of Europe, and is being answered, counterterrorism officials say.

In this former industrial town north of London, a small group of young Britons whose parents emigrated from Pakistan after World War II have turned against their families' new home. They say they would like to see Prime Minister Tony Blair dead or deposed and an Islamic flag hanging outside No. 10 Downing Street.

They swear allegiance to Osama bin Laden and his goal of toppling Western democracies to establish an Islamic superstate under Shariah law, like Afghanistan under the Taliban. They call the Sept. 11 hijackers the "Magnificent 19" and regard the Madrid train bombings as a clever way to drive a wedge into Europe.

On Thursday evening, at a tennis center community hall in Slough, west of London, their leader, Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammad, spoke of his adherence to Osama bin Laden. If Europe fails to heed Mr. bin Laden's offer of a truce — provided that all foreign troops are withdrawn from Iraq in three months — Muslims will no longer be restrained from attacking the Western countries that play host to them, the sheik said.

"All Muslims of the West will be obliged," he said, to "become his sword" in a new battle. Europeans take heed, he added, saying, "It is foolish to fight people who want death — that is what they are looking for."

On working-class streets of old industrial towns like Crawley, Luton, Birmingham and Manchester, and in the Arab enclaves of Germany, France, Switzerland and other parts of Europe, intelligence officials say a fervor for militancy is intensifying and becoming more open.

In Hamburg, Dr. Mustafa Yoldas, the director of the Council of Islamic Communities, saw a correlation to the discord in Iraq. "This is a very dangerous situation at the moment," Dr. Yoldas said. "My impression is that Muslims have become more and more angry against the United States."

Hundreds of young Muslim men are answering the call of militant groups affiliated or aligned with Al Qaeda, intelligence and counterterrorism officials in the region say.

Even more worrying, said a senior counterterrorism official, is that the level of "chatter" — communications among people suspected of terrorism and their supporters — has markedly increased since Mr. bin Laden's warning to Europe this month. The spike in chatter has given rise to acute worries that planning for another strike in Europe is advanced.

"Iraq dramatically strengthened their recruitment efforts," one counterterrorism official said. He added that some mosques now display photos of American soldiers fighting in Iraq alongside bloody scenes of bombed out Iraqi neighborhoods. Detecting actual recruitments is almost impossible, he said, because it is typically done face to face.

And recruitment is paired with a compelling new strategy to bring the fight to Europe.

Members of Al Qaeda have "proven themselves to be extremely opportunistic, and they have decided to try to split the Western alliance," the official continued. "They are focusing their energies on attacking the big countries" — the United States, Britain and Spain — so as to "scare" the smaller states.

Some Muslim recruits are going to Iraq, counterterrorism officials in Europe say, but more are remaining home, possibly joining cells that could help with terror logistics or begin operations like the one that came to notice when the British police seized 1,200 pounds of ammonium nitrate, a key bomb ingredient, in late March, and arrested nine Pakistani-Britons, five of whom have been charged with trying to build a terrorist bomb.

Stoking that anger are some of the same fiery Islamic clerics who preached violence and martyrdom before the Sept. 11 attacks.

On Friday, Abu Hamza, the cleric accused of tutoring Richard Reid before he tried to blow up a Paris-to-Miami jetliner with explosives hidden in his shoe, urged a crowd of 200 outside his former Finsbury Park mosque to embrace death and the "culture of martyrdom."

Though the British home secretary, David Blunkett, has sought to strip Abu Hamza of his British citizenship and deport him, the legal battle has dragged on for years while Abu Hamza keeps calling down the wrath of God.

Also this week, over Mr. Blunkett's vigorous objection, a 35-year-old Algerian held under emergency laws passed after Sept. 11 was released from Belmarsh Prison. The man, identified only as "G," suffered from severe mental illness, his lawyers told a special immigration appeals panel, which let him out of prison and put him under house arrest.

Mr. Blunkett insisted that that should not be the final judgment on a man already found by one court "to be a threat to life and liberty."

In an interview on the BBC over the weekend, Mr. Blunkett advocated a stronger deportation policy, initially focused on 12 foreign terror suspects held without charge since the Sept. 11 attacks.

Despite tougher antiterrorism laws, the police, prosecutors and intelligence chiefs across Europe say they are struggling to contain the openly seditious speech of Islamic extremists, some of whom, they say, have been inciting young men to suicidal violence since the 1990's.

One chapter in Sheik Omar's lectures these days is "The Psyche of Muslims for Suicide Bombing."

The authorities say that laws to protect religious expression and civil liberties have the result of limiting what they can do to stop hateful speech. In the case of foreigners, they say they are often left to seek deportation, a lengthy and uncertain process subject to legal appeals, when the suspect can keep inciting attacks.

That leaves the authorities to resort to less effective means, such as mouse-trapping Islamic radicals with immigration violations in hopes of making a deportation case stick. "In many countries, the laws are liberal and it's not easy," an official said.

At a mosque in Geneva, an imam recently exhorted his followers to "impose the will of Islam on the godless society of the West."

"It was quite virulent," said a senior official with knowledge of the sermon. "The imam was encouraging his followers to take over the godless society."

While such a sermon may be incitement, recruitment takes a more shadowy course, and is hard to detect, a senior antiterrorism official said. "Believers are appealed to in the mosques, but the real conversations take place in restaurants or cafes or private apartments," the official said.

While some clerics, like Abu Qatada — said to be the spiritual counselor of Mohamed Atta, who led the Sept. 11 hijacking team — remain in prison in Britain without charge, others like Sheik Omar, leader of a movement called Al Muhajiroun, carry on a robust ideological campaign.

"There is no case against me," Sheik Omar said in an interview. Referring to calls by members of Parliament that he be deported, he added, "but they are Jewish" and "they have been calling for that for years."

Among his ardent followers is Ishtiaq Alamgir, 24, who heads Al Muhajiroun in Luton and calls himself Sayful Islam, the sword of Islam. He says there are about 50 members here but exact numbers are secret.

Most days, he and a handful of his followers run a recruitment stand on Dunstable Road much to the chagrin of the Muslim elders of Luton.

Mainstream Muslims are outraged by the situation, saying the actions of a few are causing their communities to be singled out for surveillance and making the larger population distrustful of them.

Muhammad Sulaiman, a stalwart of the mainstream Central Mosque here, was penniless when he arrived from the Kashmiri frontier of Pakistan in 1956. He raised money to build the Central Mosque here and now leads a campaign to ban Al Muhajiroun radicals from the city's 10 mosques.

"This is show-off business," he says in accented English. "I don't want these kids in my mosque."

Other community leaders look to the government to do something, if only to help prevent the demonization of British Muslims, or "Islamophobia," as some here call it.

"I think these kids are being brainwashed by a few radical clerics," said Akhbar Dad Khan, another elder of the Central Mosque. He wants them prosecuted or deported. "We should be able to control this negativity," he said.

In Slough, Sheik Omar spent much of his time Thursday night regaling his young followers with the erotic delights of paradise — sweet kisses and the pleasures of bathing with scores of women — while he also preached the virtues of death in Islamic struggle as a ticket to paradise.

He spoke of terrorism as the new norm of cultural conflict, "the fashion of the 21st century," practiced as much by Tony Blair as by Al Qaeda.

"We may be caught up in the target as the people of Manhattan were," he told them.

And he warned Western leaders, "You may kill bin Laden, but the phenomenon, you cannot kill it — you cannot destroy it."

"Our Muslim brothers from abroad will come one day and conquer here and then we will live under Islam in dignity," he said.

Patrick E. Tyler reported from Luton, Slough and London and Don Van Natta Jr. from London. Souad Mekhennet contributed reporting from Germany.,,2-2004180985,00.html

April 22,2004


A SUICIDE bomb plot to kill thousands of soccer fans at Saturday's Manchester United-Liverpool match was dramatically foiled yesterday.

Armed cops seized ten terror suspects in dawn raids.

Intelligence chiefs believe al-Qaeda fanatics planned to blow themselves up amid 67,000 unsuspecting supporters. A source said: "The target was Old Trafford."

The Islamic fanatics planned to sit all around the ground to cause maximum carnage.

They had already bought the tickets for various positions in the stadium, cops revealed last night.

But armed cops foiled the horrific plot - which could have killed thousands watching Manchester United's home game against Liverpool on Saturday - in a series of dawn raids yesterday.

Ten people were arrested after a massive surveillance operation involving British anti-terror units and American authorities.

A police source said: "The plot involved several individual bombers in separate parts of the stadium.

"If successful, any such attack would have caused absolute carnage. Thousands of people could have been killed."

The planned attack would have had an instant global impact as the game is being televised worldwide.

More than 400 police swooped yesterday after a "major terrorist figure" under surveillance moved to Manchester. Police and intelligence organisations believe he came to direct the massacre, which would have been the first al-Qaeda-style outrage in Britain.

Nine men and one woman were arrested — all Iraqi Kurds or from North Africa.

Special Branch and the security services had been monitoring their movements and eavesdropping on mobile phone calls for months.

The operation also involved the US National Security Agency and GCHQ, the Government's intelligence listening post.

Seven of the suspects were held in Manchester and one each in South Yorkshire, Staffordshire and the West Midlands.

It is believed all have links to extremist Islamic organisations. They were being quizzed at separate police stations around North West England last night.

But it was unclear whether any explosives or weapons had been recovered.

Bombers planning the Old Trafford massacre would have run the risk of being searched going into the ground before the 3pm kick-off.

Manchester United said away fans and those sitting in the higher tiers were frisked.

The identities and details of the suspects remained top secret last night — even to many of those involved in the operation.

One of the raids was at a flat above Dolphins takeaway in Upper Brook Street, near Manchester University. The area has a large ethnic community with many properties converted into bedsits.

Irfaan Arif, who lives in a nearby flat, said: "I was woken at 4am, looked out of the window and saw a lot of armed police. There was loads of banging and shouting."

The three-storey Dolphins building was cordoned off along with next-door properties housing AK Computers and Funky Fones.

Forensic experts in protective clothing moved in after the initial search teams.

A police spokesman confirmed: "A number of search warrants were executed under the Terrorism Act 2000. Ten people have been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of terrorism.

We appreciate the public interest in this but are unable to provide more specific details at this stage."

Greater Manchester's Assistant Chief Constable Dave Whatton said: "It was an anti-terrorism operation that has been going on for some time and it will continue in the future.

"This is the first action that the public have become aware of as it is overt. It is set against the background of an increased threat level across the country.

"The addresses raided will continue to be searched for some time. It is a complex inquiry."

And he appealed: "Because of the national heightened threat levels we would still ask people to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to police."

Sheikh Mohammed bal Qadri, deputy director of a mosque in Upper Brook Street, said he did not believe any of his members were among those being held.

He added: "Since September 11 we have been very vigilant, as mosques should be.

"If I see a person who is new, I ask him why he is here and what he is doing and ask these kind of questions.

"We are against these evil acts. In the religion of Islam we have tolerance." The raids follow revelations last week that police in Manchester had raised their terror alert level.

More than 50 officers were moved from regular duties to work on a task force committed to combating terrorism.

Police have also conducted detailed surveys of land around Manchester Airport to identify sites which could be used to launch missiles attacks on aircraft.

Manchester Central MP Tony Lloyd said yesterday: "Clearly this is one of the most difficult levels of policing. But when police get the information to act successfully the whole of the British public will applaud their actions."


MIM: More dhimmitude in the U.K. - It's okay for terrorists to call for attacks on the UK and burn Union Jacks , but the British 'patriots' who burn the AM 'black flag of Islam' are stopped by the police .

'Patriots' turn up the heat in St George's Day demo
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Police contain the Market Hill demo. Picture by Tom Bliss

Police move in after 'terrorist flag' is set alight 23 April 2004 (UK) Police moved quickly on Friday afternoon to contain a massed demo in central Luton which saw the flag representing an alleged terrorist organisation set alight.

The chanting crowd, estimated to be about 300 strong, gathered in Market Hill on the afternoon of St George's Day.

Shouting football slogans and nationalist chants, they then set alight to what appeared to be a home-made black and white flag carrying the name of the extremist Islamic organisation al-Muhajiroun – which has a high-profile branch in Luton – and the slogan 'No To Terrorism.'

A bare-chested young man with a shaven head stood on a bench to set fire to the flag, which was then stamped on and kicked around by other youths.

Police formed cordons outside Brookes' bar at the bottom of Castle Street, at the bottom of Chapel Street and near the Park Square entrance to the Arndale Centre to effectively seal off Market Hill and contain the gathering, but made no arrests.

For the latest developments of the story, see the April 28 edition of the Luton News.
23 April 2004

Muslim websites in West defend bin Laden, call for '5th column'

By Joseph Farah

© 2001

From his plush, high-tech headquarters in London, Sheik Omar Bakri Muhammad runs a worldwide Islamist organization that defends Osama bin Laden.

Part of his Al-Muhajiroun empire is an English-language website – one that calls for the death by crucifixion, or worse, of the real terrorists: Americans and their Muslim proxies in Pakistan.

According to Sheik Omar, Muslims in the West have very serious responsibilities in preparing the people to embrace Islam or to accept the Islamic way of life.

Al-Muhajiroun calls for Muslims in the West to "be the front line of the coming Khilafah … to become strong and united in order to become the fifth column, which is able to put pressure on the enemies of Islam and to be able to support the Muslim Ummah worldwide." The organization believes that "bonding the Muslim community in the West with the Muslims globally" is the secret to setting off a "worldwide Islamic revolution."

Sheik Omar makes no bones about his outright support of the Taliban, while proclaiming Osama bin Laden innocent of the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. or any other terrorist incidents. Instead, he is on record in many public interviews blaming the Mossad for the destruction. publishes a fatwa against Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf and the U.S.

What's the verdict? "The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His apostle and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this world, and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement."

Who is this Sheik Omar? He was born in Aleppo, Syria, in 1958 and – like bin Laden – raised among the privileged in a wealthy Muslim family.

He became a serious student of Islam and the Koran. He received his B.A. in Shari'ah and the foundations of Islamic law from Shari'ah University in Damascus. He got his M.A. in Islamic jurisprudence from the University of Al-Imam Al-U'zaie in Beirut. He claims to be the author of 43 books and booklets about Islam in Arabic and English. Through the website, he sells videos and books and announces rallies and lectures – mostly in the United Kingdom.

He claims to have hundreds of thousands of followers throughout the world – including many in the U.S. He is also the judge of the Shari'ah court in the UK, the secretary general of the Islamic World League and the spokesman for the International Islamic Front.

His goal, like bin Laden's, is to re-establish the Khilifah – the worldwide domination of Islamic rule.

"Al-Muhajiroun has many organs which are active within society under its leadership," he claims. "These organs specialize in different fields, such as: the Society of Muslim Lawyers, the Society of Converts to Islam, the Society of Muslim Parents, the London School of Shari'ah, the Shari'ah Court of the UK, the Society of Muslim Students, the Islamic World League, the Muslim Cultural Society and the Party of the Future." is just one of dozens of radical Islamist, English-language websites that appear to be specifically designed to influence and recruit in the West.

Another one is

No, this is not a site promoting California as the next Islamic state – not quite.

Here's how the purveyors of this website explain the name: "When we came across the following explanation for the name of California, that being the domain of the Khilafah, we thought this would be a challenging name for a publication calling the Muslims to the full application of Islam and a return to the Khilafah State. However, it is not implied that California is in any way the chosen or designated for this state. Edward Hale, author of 'The Man Without a Country,' reported in the Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society that the name California was to be found in work of Montalvo, a Spanish author of popular romances of chivalry in the early 1500s. This was the same period as the Spanish conquest in America. … 'Califerne was the domain of the Caliph, the ruler of the Mohammedan world.'"

A French etymologist suggests that "Montalvo was inspired to borrow the Frankish Califerne and Hispanicize it California," explains

So, while some Mexicans have their eye on reclaiming California, they may have competition from Islamists.

Then there is the Sheffield Hallam University Islamic Society website, also out of the UK.

Like many of the other radical Islamic sites, this one reserves special angst for the Musharraf regime in Pakistan.

"Pakistan currently is subservient to the international order dominated by America," it explains. "She is subjugated to economic enslavement by the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and the World Bank and accepts the sovereignty of the United Nations over her. Currently the government is planning to resume a $1.5 billion IMF loan program."

It's for this reason the site bemoans that "Russia did not blink an eyelid due to any type of fear for the nuclear arsenal of Pakistan before bombarding the Muslims of Chechnya." prominently features an interview with bin Laden and horror stories about Muslims being persecuted in the United States in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attack.

You can also send e-cards to all your friends observing Ramadan., one of the more sophisticated sites of its kind, leaves little doubt about where it stands on the issues of the day.

"President Bush's 'Wanted Dead or Alive' call evoked memories of how the 'West was Won' by a brutish and arrogant people," notes one prominent article entitled "How the West Was Lost." "The native Indian civilization was wiped out. Could it be that the West will be lost due to this continuing brutish and arrogant behavior?"

The article goes on to suggest that America's action in Afghanistan "may well be the beginning of the end for the supremacy of the Western civilization, if a viable alternative world order comes into being that is truly universal. This is not as crazy as it might sound."

The viable alternative world order suggested by is, of course, one ruled by Islam.

Don't believe those moderate Muslims in the Western media who tell you that jihad means "overcoming adversity," says

"In fact, the Shari'ah meaning of jihad is to exert one's utmost effort in fighting the disbelievers for the sake of Allah, directly by fighting in the battlefield or indirectly by helping this struggle by monetary means, scholarly verdicts, and encouraging people to participate in the jihad," an article on the site proclaims. "Other tasks which may be difficult and thus involve some exertion but are not related to fighting, such as fixing a boiler or making a chair, are not termed jihad as understood in the Shari'ah." warns that an "alliance with America is a great crime forbidden by Islam.

The website goes on to explain that it is not concerned about who attacked the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 – but, at the same time, it believes the evidence against bin Laden is lacking.

The site blames the Jews for inciting the rulers of America to take revenge against the whole Islamic world for the attacks – for which, of course, bin Laden has since claimed responsibility. also gives prominence to an interview with bin Laden. Much of the rest of the site is in Arabic.

Does the Koran justify terrorist attacks like America witnessed on Sept. 11? Without a doubt, answers

"Ameer of Tanzeem-e-Islami explained that the Islamic viewpoint on the matter is that an attack may be launched by Muslims, without any ultimatum, against an enemy with whom the Muslims are not bound by a treaty," explains the website. "Whereas upon a nation with which Muslims have signed a treaty, it is not allowed to attack them without an ultimatum (in case they violate the terms of the treaty first). He said that guerrilla war is also condoned in Islam in a situation in which either a people are pushed against a wall and have no other means to raise their voices or where the enemy is overwhelmingly strong and cannot be otherwise defeated. He said that an attack in which civilians are killed is very much disliked in Islam. Nonetheless, the oppressed and the persecuted have the right to retaliate terror with terror."

------------------------------------ MIM Note: Omar Khayaam who was arrested in Britain in connection with the most recent bomb plots had "gone missing' in Pakistan where he received Jihad training before returning to Britain.

Omar Bakri: I taught suspect

By Patrick Sawer, Evening Standard (UK)
31 March 2004 Standard

The leader of Muslim fundamentalist group al-Muhajiroun today denied brainwashing one of the suspects.

Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad admitted that he had taught 22-year-old Omar Khayam from Crawley.

He added: "Omar left us in the spring of 2001, before September 11. People say he was brainwashed by Omar Bakri, but when he left he condemned our group and me personally.

"They were not interested in what we stood for. I believe in rational discussion and intelligent debate. His family knows I was not involved in what happened. What I said was that people who go abroad to fight for their country can't be condemned, and I stand by that. That is fine under Islamic law.

"But attacking people who you live side by side with, who are part of your community, is not.

"I don't recruit people to go abroad to fight. I want to teach people."

He accused the Government of staging high-profile arrests, adding: "They want to show the EU and the USA, and the British public, that they are doing something, to say, look we are making arrests. Of course they must be able to defend themselves but they did it the wrong way. It was like a publicity stunt.

"They call children, 16 or 17 years old, al Qaeda. I can't believe these children are linked to al Qaeda. The arrests show the Government don't know the right people.

"I find it hard to believe these men were plotting violence, they were normal young men, some of them used to be members of our organisation. I don't believe they could be involved in this sort of thing. However, if they are, they need to face reality.

"I believe in what I am fighting for, but I don't believe in violence of any kind." He continued: "Terrorism has now become the fashion of the world.

"We are seeing terror strikes in Spain, the US, and British Government terrorise people in Afghanistan, the Israelis terrorise the Palestinians.

"What happened yesterday is part of this new international phenomenon. Everyone is afraid, all society thinks it's under attack."


London to host Islamic 'celebration' of Sept 11
By Thair Shaikh
(Filed: 08/09/2002)

Extremist muslim clerics will meet in London on September 11 to celebrate the anniversary of al-Qaeda's attacks on America and to launch an organisation for Islamic militants.

The conference, which will be attended by the most radical mullahs in Britain, will argue that the atrocities were justified because Muslims must defend themselves against armed aggression.

It will launch the Islamic Council of Britain (ICB), which will aim to implement sharia law in Britain and will welcome al-Qa'eda sympathisers as members.

Sheikh Mohammed

The conference, to be held at Finsbury Park mosque, north London, will be attended by followers of militant groups and chaired by their Muslim leaders, including Omar Bakri Mohammed, whose al-Muhajiroun group wants to establish a worldwide Islamic state.

Mr Mohammed, 44, who was born in Syria and lives in London, has been investigated by Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist squad for anti-semitic statements.

He said: "The people at this conference look at September 11 like a battle, as a great achievement by the mujahideen against the evil superpower.

A poster advertising the conference

"I never praised September 11 after it happened but now I can see why they did it."

Mr Mohammed, who is entitled to stay in Britain although his 1980s claim for asylum failed, said that he would not stop al-Qa'eda members from joining the ICB.

He said: "We don't perceive them as the US perceives them; we see them as a sincere devoted people who stood firm against the invasion of a Muslim country."

The clerics claim that the ICB is funded by Saudi-based businessmen, which, if true, will embarrass Saudi Arabia.

The Riyadh government expelled Mr Mohammed in 1986 and recently launched a multi-million-dollar public relations campaign to persuade America that it is rooting out Islamic militants.

Al-Muhajiroun claims to have secured a six-figure sum for funding the ICB and said it would build a dozen Islamic centres, launch a website and hold seminars and classes for Muslims.

Mr Mohammed said: "I believe the Muslim Council of Britain has sold out to the British Government. Many Muslims in Britain feel like this.

"We have been working on getting the funding for six months: it is from a group of Saudi businessmen. Please don't write about this. I am against the killing of innocent people; we are not at war with anybody in this country."

Abu Hamza al-Masri, a cleric at the Finsbury Park mosque, will be co-chairing the conference. Several suspected al-Qa'eda members have been linked to his group, Supporters of Sharia, and the FBI is seeking his extradition for allegedly trying to set up a terrorist training camp in America.

Mr al-Masri, an Egyptian who lost both hands and an eye while fighting in Afghanistan against the Soviet occupation, is also wanted in Yemen on terrorist charges.

Radical Muslims speaking at the conference include Yasser al-Siri, 40, an Egyptian-born dissident who arrived in Britain in 1993 and claimed political asylum.

He was released from custody in July after extradition proceedings by America were dropped because of insufficient evidence. Mr al-Siri has been sentenced to death in Egypt for a bombing that killed a 12-year-old girl.

16 August 2002: Muslims 'must defend Saddam'
14 August 2002: Muslim radicals in Britain issue 'holy war' warning
25 July 2002: London imam faces FBI inquiry over al-Qa'eda training camp
20 October 2001: 'Mouthpiece of radicals' denies links to bin Laden
12 September 2001: America on war footing

Related reports
MI5 questions Britons on Tora Bora
CPS: Terror suspects cannot be tried here

External links
Muslim Council of Britain
Muslim News
The Muslim Directory
Islamic Information Centre
Association of Muslim Lawyers
Hizb ut-Tahrir [Official site]


London as terrorist haven in 1997. In 2000 Yassir Al Sirri was indicted on charges of aiding Sheik Abdel Rahman who was imprisoned in 1996 for his role in the 1993 WTC bombing. Al Sirri was also accused of helping plan the assassination of Massoud the head of the Northern Alliance who were fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Al Muhajiroun and Omar Bakri are also mentioned.

Britain's dissident community of Arab Islamists is a hotbed of radicalism


by Nicolas Pelham

When Egyptian officials go to Teheran this week, they'll be rubbing shoulders with key Islamists from London. Heading the British delegation will be Salam Azzam, the head of the Islamic Council of Europe--an Egyptian tried (but acquitted) of conspiring to assassinate Anwar Sadat, and a close relative of Ayman Al Zawahari, the purported leader of Islamic Jihad.

But don't expect Britain to take action, because the view from London is that to date Egypt's charges have been all puff and no substance. President Mubarak once blamed Iran and Sudan for sponsoring Egypt's militants; today he blames London and Afghanistan. But if President Mubarak two thousand miles away feels sure of his case, Egypt's embassy in London doesn't. The press attachι, Ahmed Al Ibrashi, says he's had no information. And the British Home Office told Cairo Times that Egypt has made no requests for extradition. Islamists in London say Egypt is merely looking for an external scapegoat for its internal ills.

It's not as if the 14 militants listed in Egypt's "Call to Combat Terrorism" (posted on the Internet) are hard to find. Every Arab journalist in London has the home numbers of Egypt's militants abroad. Topping the list is Yasser Al Sirri, 35, sentenced by an Egyptian military tribunal to death and a 15-year-term of hard labor for involvement in the failed assassination bid which killed a five-year-old girl instead of the former Egyptian Prime Minister Atef Sidki. The Egyptian government claims Sirri manages and finances the group New Vanguards of Conquest. Unemployed and receiving benefits from the British government, he lives in the posh London residential district of St. John's Wood. He has renamed his home the Islamic Observation Center, and from there he faxes out bulletins in the name of the Gamaa Islamiya.

But his messages are often at odds with those of the leadership imprisoned in Egypt. While those in jail have called for an unconditional ceasefire, Sirri offers a two-month truce. "As long as they're not free to speak their minds without torture," says Sirri, "they can't be accepted as the voice of the Gamaa."

Perhaps because of that, his offer of a truce is one Egyptian officials reportedly take seriously. In an interview with Cairo Times, Sirri said the Egyptian embassy had responded by sending an Egyptian journalist for exploratory talks. In Cairo, Kamal Al Ganzouri denied the claims.

But Sirri isn't alone. Every year more than 2000 people from the Middle East seek political asylum in Britain; according to the Home Office, half of them get it. And unlike other European countries, Britain does not forbid foreign exiles from engaging in politics; there are at least 15 groups in Britain seeking to overthrow established governments in the Muslim world.

Their members frequent the same mosques and discussion groups. Omar Bakri Mohammed is one of their luminaries--a Syrian refugee in Britain, who together with the Saudi dissident Mohammed Al Masaari, organised a show trial earlier this year of Mubarak in central London's Trafalgar Square.

Britain's new Labour government has promised to tighten its anti-terrorist laws by outlawing masterminding violence overseas and fundraising for political movements employing violence. But the principle of what Britain calls "secure and convenient asylum" will survive. And Britain is snubbing Egypt's demand that incitement to terrorism be made a criminal offence.

Senior Labour MPs have made clear that combatting repressive dictatorships will still be allowed. "We are a free society, and so we must not forget that someone who was considered yesterday's terrorist could be tomorrow's freedom fighter," said Jack Straw, the Home Secretary. He cited the example of Nelson Mandela.

11 December 1997
Vol. 1, Iss. 21
Cleric's son 'broke into mosque'
BBC, 14 Jul 2003

The son of Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri has appeared in court charged with conspiracy to burgle and cause criminal damage at the mosque where his father used to preach.

Mohammed Kamel, 21, of west London, and three others tried to break into the Finsbury Park mosque in north London in February, a jury at Snaresbrook Crown Court was told.

Kamel, Mustafa Abdullah, 21, of south London, Abdullah Merchant, 26, of north London, and a 16-year-old who cannot be identified for legal reasons, all deny the charge.

Mr Abdullah and Mr Merchant also deny assaulting Pc Andrew Reeder and Sergeant Dan Wright.

Police went to the mosque just after 2145 BST on 11 February this year after a member of the public spotted a group of men scaling the wall, Andrew Campbell, prosecuting, told the jury.

The only sensible conclusion you can come to for them trying to break in is that they would try to steal once they got in or intended to cause damage.

The mosque was shut at the time for health and safety reasons, and was secured by railings and padlocked metal grilles at the windows and doors.

The officers who arrested the four men recovered two screwdrivers, a torch, bolt cutters, two ratchets, a balaclava and a number of screws which had been removed from a metal grille.

"These four men had taken the trouble of getting hold of the necessary tools in order to break in," Mr Campbell told the jury.

"The only sensible conclusion you can come to for them trying to break in is that they would try to steal once they got in or intended to cause damage."

Mr Abu Hamza is banned from preaching at the mosque but continues to hold services in the street outside.

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MIM: The warnings were being sounded before 9/11 and the militants message was clear

Radical Islam: The Enemy In Our Midst

By Patrick Goodenough

CNS Commentary

October 18, 2000

( - On Monday morning, an orthodox Jewish student traveling in a bus in London was stabbed more than 20 times in an attack British police said may be linked to the situation in the Middle East. An Arab man has been charged with attempted murder.

That same day, leaders of Britain's 280,000-strong Jewish community called on the authorities to arrest militant Muslims in the UK who have been calling for Jews to be murdered. Leaflets had been distributed, said the UK Board of Jewish Deputies, in at least three major British cities during the recent violence in Israel and the Palestinian self-rule areas.

They included such slogans as: "The final hour will not come until the Muslims kill the Jews."

Last Friday, outside London's main mosque, similar sentiments were expressed in public. "Kill the Jews," shouted several hundred demonstrating Muslims as leaders on a makeshift platform burned American and Israeli flags.

The demonstration was led by Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed, a Syrian-born cleric who issued a written statement calling for the murder of Jews. Describing President Clinton as a "murderer" and Ehud Barak and Tony Blair his "co-conspirators," it called U.S. "army, embassies, bases and planes" legitimate targets for Muslims worldwide.

"Down, down USA, USA, you will pay, Osama is on his way," the protestors chanted, invoking the anti-western terror chief Osama bin Laden.

"Bomb, bomb Tel Aviv, bomb, bomb the White House, bomb, bomb Downing Street."

A line of British policemen stood impassively by, trying to prevent the blockading of a busy road in front of the mosque but otherwise taking no action as the waves of incitement washed over them.

"There are six million Muslims in the UK," one man shouted through a megaphone. "We must stand and fight against the Jews."

Actually there are closer to two million Muslims in Britain, and the vast majority of them would repudiate what they would see as the misinterpretation of their religion.

But it is the vocal minority, stirred up by such leaders as Bakri, who are setting the agenda, and creating a climate in which 20-year David Meyers is stabbed repeatedly with a six-inch blade on a public bus. Britain's Jewish community is on its highest alert since the 1991 Gulf War because of threats linked to the Middle East violence.

(In France - 750,000 Jews, 3-4 million Muslims - some 80 attacks have occurred on Jewish property over the past fortnight. Jewish leaders have asked the government to deploy troops to protect synagogues if the situation worsens, while mainstream Islamic leaders have said the perpetrators are not representatives of the Muslim faith.)

In response to Myers' stabbing, Bakri had this to say: "'I warn and advise the Jewish community in the UK to distance themselves from the state of Israel. Muslims are not after the Jewish nations and communities around the world ... [but] if you support Israel financially, verbally or physically you will become part of the conflict."

It's not clear how Myers was expressing such support for Israel. But he was wearing a Jewish kippa and reading from a book of psalms - apparently sufficient association with the enemy as far as his assailant was concerned.

Bakri is a free man, free to disseminate his vitriolic literature and stir up his followers. There are several other UK-based militants with similar agendas, including the imam (religious leader) of a north London mosque, Abu Hamza al-Masri, whose activities have been the subject of concerned questions in the British parliament.

Target America

And it's not just happening in Britain.

As far back in 1994, a PBS documentary called Jihad in America presented video footage and documents which investigative reporter Steven Emerson said proved America has become fertile ground for militants looking for recruits and raising funds for Mideast terror.

Footage from several Islamic gatherings around the country shows leaders calling openly for jihad (holy war) against Jews, Christians, and America. One of them, named as Fayiz Azram, tells a meeting in Atlanta: "Blood must flow. There must be widows, there must be orphans. Hands and limbs must be cut, and the limbs and blood must be spread everywhere."

The rhetoric could come straight out of a gory description of the aftermath of a Hamas suicide-bombing on a public bus in Jerusalem. Indeed, Emerson argued that legitimate Muslim organizations operating in the U.S. serve as "fronts" for rejectionist groups like Hamas and Hizballah.

Emerson's documentary won favorable reviews - the Los Angeles Times in November 1994 called his reporting "dogged and more than slightly gutsy" - but Muslim leaders slammed it.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, which describes itself "a Washington-based Islamic advocacy group," described Emerson in a mailing five months ago as someone with a "long history of defamatory and inaccurate attacks on the Islamic community in this country."

Emerson has stressed that he clearly differentiates between militant and mainstream Islam. But State Department figures show that 98.3 per cent of Americans killed or wounded in terrorism between 1993 and 1999 were attacked either in the Middle East and South Asia, or by perpetrators associated with those two regions.

That reality, says Emerson, is "not an invention of Hollywood nor a stereotype but rather reflects an accurate and sober assessment of the truth."

Nationally syndicated columnist Cal Thomas wrote in the LA Times this week that the government's primary obligation was to protect and defend the U.S. and its constitution from all enemies, domestic and foreign.

Referring to radical Islam, he said: "It's time for a new approach to an enemy that, unlike communism, is unlikely to collapse under its own weight. Rather it is intent on making sure we collapse and is willing to die by the thousands to ensure that happens."

The freedoms enjoyed by Westerners are what make their societies so attractive to Islamic militants. But a situation where rights and freedoms are exercised without accompanying responsibilities and duties creates a breeding ground for extremism.

In Britain, new terrorism legislation enacted last July widens the current definition of terrorism to include violence for religious and ideological ends, and creates a new criminal offence of inciting acts of terror outside the UK.

But the recent introduction of a wide-ranging Human Rights Act is going to make it even more difficult than ever to enforce the law, deport troublemakers, or clamp down on militant organizations.

As Sheikh Bakri told me several months ago, "We will use your democracy to destroy your democracy."

It's time the West woke up.

(Patrick Goodenough is the London Bureau Chief for


Extremist backs 'kill Jews' poster
By Peter Foster and Philip Aldrick
(Filed: 19/10/2000)

AN Islamic extremist has defended a leaflet and poster campaign exhorting British Muslims to "kill the Jews" and wage a holy war against Israel.

Jewish leaders are demanding the prosecution of those responsible and seeking talks with Jack Straw, the Home Secretary. However, Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohamed, the leader of the Islamic fundamentalist group al-Muhajiroun, said its leaflets, which have appeared in London, Manchester and Birmingham, were merely a warning not to support the state of Israel.

Concerns that the material would inflame relations between Muslims and Jews were heightened this week when a 20-year-old Jew was stabbed on a bus in Stamford Hill, an area of north London which is home to a large community of Orthodox jews.

The attack came days after Jo Wagerman, president of the Board of Deputies, wrote to Lord Williams, the Attorney General, warning that there was a "direct and causal link between literature which invites hatred and the level of racist violence on the street".

Although police arrested five young men in Stamford Hill two weeks ago on suspicion of distributing anti-Semitic literature, Jewish leaders are angry that more is not being done to target the real powers behind the leaflets.

Sources at the board said that police appeared reluctant to prosecute because the calls to fight the Jews were carefully couched in quotes from the Koran. One said that the Government was afraid of provoking a Muslim backlash.

David Lidington, the shadow home office minister, said: "Whoever is responsible for this should be investigated. I would say the same if these posters were directed against British Muslims."

18 October 2000: Man charged with stabbing

17 October 2000: Jewish student is stabbed 20 times


Al-Qa'eda terror trio linked to London School of 'Extremists'
By Rajeev Syal and Chris Hastings
(Filed: 27/01/2002)

THE London School of Economics, known for its far-Left radicalism in the 1960s, has been host to at least three al-Qa'eda-linked terrorists, The Telegraph has been told.

An intelligence report says that the trio studied or lectured at the London University college between 1990 and 1993, when it became a breeding ground for Islamic extremism.

The report will concern college authorities, who want to distance the LSE from its image of 30 years ago when it was known as a base for Trotskyist and Maoist students.

The three - including one man called Ahmed Omar Sheikh - have been revealed as having links with the LSE in an intelligence file seen by this newspaper and now being studied by police.

Omar Sheikh, 28, a former mathematics student at the LSE, is said to have been linked to last week's drive-by shooting in Calcutta that killed five policemen.

He has also been named as one of the key financiers of Mohammed Atta, the pilot of one of the jets that hit the World Trade Centre on September 11.

Sheikh, who went to a private school in Snaresbrook, east London, became involved with radicals while at the LSE.

Friends say that in 1993, while in his second year there, he went to Bosnia on an aid mission, and converted to an extreme form of Islam. He later played a leading role among Kashmiri separatists.

Indian police seized him in a 1994 shootout after three British backpackers were kidnapped. He was sprung from jail in 1999 and is now on the run.

Another alleged terrorist was arrested in Delhi last month for reported involvement in the recent attack on the Indian parliament. He lectured to Muslim students at the LSE in 1993, according to the report.

The third man enrolled on a computer course at the LSE in 1992, say police. They believe that he used his position to recruit members for Jaish-e-Mohammed, a radical Kashmiri separatist group closely associated with al-Qa'eda.

LSE authorities recognised that fundamentalist activity was getting out of control in 1995 when extremist groups - who want to see an Islamic state founded in Britain - recruited on campus.

The students' union was asked to check the credentials of all members of the campus Islamic society to ensure they were bona fide members. The university threatened to close the society's prayer room unless it took decisive action.

An Islamic society official said last week: "There were problems. A number of students were brainwashed by outsiders. They did become very extreme. The matter has now been dealt with."

An LSE official said: "There was some activity in the mid-1990s. Together with the students' union we checked that only bona fide students were actually linked to the Islamic society."

There was a resurgence of activity two years ago when members of al-Muhajiroun, an extremist group, tried to recruit volunteers at a freshers' fair. They were expelled by security staff.

Last week, former students expressed surprise at the rise in Islamic radicalism at the university.

Robert Kilroy-Silk, the television presenter and former Labour MP who studied there in the mid-1960s, said: "The LSE is a wonderful place because it brings together different people from across the political, social and religious spectrums.

"It is inevitable that some of those people will veer towards the extremes."

23 January 2002: Gunmen kill five in attack on American offices
14 December 2001: 12 die in raid on India parliament
14 September 2001: FBI tracks down the Florida lair of flying school terrorists
12 September 2001: Morning that left the US speechless

Related reports
British cash and fighters still flow to bin Laden
Radical reputation for sit-ins and anarchy

External links
London School of Economics and Political Science
Jaish-e-Mohammed - South Asia Analysis Group
Al-Qa'eda - Federation of American Scientists
Muslim News
Muslim Council of Britain

This item is available on the Militant Islam Monitor website, at