Results tagged “United Kingdom”
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The Royal Air Force stated that it has begun supporting ISAF and Afghan ground troops with "armed intelligence and surveillance missions" using drones remotely piloted from Britain. A former chief of defense intelligence said terrorists operate in "a condition of sanctuary" in parts of Afghanistan.
Three al Qaeda-linked British Islamists who planned mass-casualty suicide attacks, Irfan Naseer, Irfan Khalid and Ashik Ali, were given prison sentences ranging from 18 to 23 years; Rahin Ahmed, an associate, received a 17-year term. Several other members of the Birmingham-based cell were also sentenced. Radical Islamists Imran Mahmood, Jahangir Alom, and Richard Dart received jail terms of less than 10 years each for planning acts of terror. Mahmood had traveled to Pakistan for terrorist training, and the other two men had tried to do so. Alom's efforts to acquire the training are tied to a Briton living in Pakistan.
An appellate court refused the government's bid to overturn a ruling that prohibits the deportation of extremist cleric Abu Qatada. He remains in prison following his arrest in March for violating bail conditions, and authorities are sifting through a large quantity of alleged extremist material seized from his home at the time.
The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Haroon Aswat, a lieutenant of extremist cleric Abu Hamza, cannot be deported to the US because he suffers from schizophrenia and might deteriorate in a US prison. Aswat is accused of conspiring with Hamza to set up a terrorist training camp in Oregon.
The Foreign and Commonwealth office expressed concern over reports that chemical weapons have been used by the Assad regime in urban locations in tactical military engagements in Syria. Four al Qaeda-inspired British jihadists plotted in 2011 to attack a Luton military base, according to trial testimony.
Lieutenant-General Nick Carter, the UK's senior commander in Afghanistan, warned against British troops cuts that could endanger the progress made in the last three years. The massive airlift of military equipment back to the UK from Afghanistan has begun.
The UK has begun sending military trainers to Mali as part of an EU mission. The Home Office lost its appeal against a ruling preventing the deportation of radical Islamist Abu Qatada; the court said the fact he was regarded as a "very dangerous person" was not relevant. Qatada was arrested earlier this month but has never faced UK charges.
The senior national counterterrorism coordinator said the government has foiled a terror plot the size of the 7/7 London tube bombings every year since 2005; he also said al Qaeda remains the biggest terror threat to the UK. British jails currently hold 134 prisoners classified as terrorists or domestic extremists, of whom 107 are linked to al Qaeda. Counterterrorism police are investigating "an awful lot of media" found at the home of extremist cleric Abu Qatada suggesting his extensive involvement in global terrorism.