Results tagged “United Kingdom”
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Abu Suleiman al-Britani, a British-born jihadist of Pakistani origin, reportedly detonated in an Al Nusrah Front suicide bombing at Aleppo Central Prison in Syria earlier this week. He is said to have been a Londoner. The UK has blacklisted the Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda's Syrian branch. As many as 20 UK fighters are thought to have died already in the Syrian conflict.
A British jihadist of Afghan origin called Abu Layth has reportedly been killed while fighting for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham in clashes with rebels; he is said to be the seventh British jihadist killed in Syria. Saajid Muhammad Badat, a British terrorist turned informant, has agreed to testify in the New York trial of extremist cleric Abu Hamza that the latter is a "terrorist with a global reach." Michael Adebolajo, one of two Islamist extremists found guilty of murdering a British soldier in Woolwich, plans to appeal the conviction.
French President Hollande said the UK and France have the "same level" Syrian jihadism, with some 600 to 700 people from their respective countries fighting in Syria; Whitehall countered that an estimated 350 Britons are fighting there. Six persons appeared in court for offenses linked to Syria, and two north London brothers, Akram and Mohamed Sebah, are said to have died fighting for al Qaeda there. Suspected Shabaab terrorist Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed, who absconded in a burka in November, and another suspect known as CF have been granted legal aid to appeal restriction orders. The Home Secretary is proposing legislation that would allow the government to strip British terror suspects of their citizenship even if it renders them stateless.
The head of the Police Officers' Association said British nationals who travel to Syria to fight with the rebels could be arrested upon their return, and noted that already this year UK authorities have arrested 16 people on suspicion of terrorism offenses in Syria, compared to 24 arrests total in 2013. Former prime minister Tony Blair warned that religious extremism has become the main source of conflict in this century, and recommended that governments tackle the problem at its ideological roots by promoting religious tolerance.
Two London women, Amal Elwahabi, 27, and Nawal Msaad, 26, have been charged with raising money for terrorists in Syria; Elwahabi was arresting while trying to board a flight to Turkey. Parliament's human rights watchdog called for a review of the government's counterterrorism powers, particularly its current terrorism prevention and investigation measures.
Foreign Secretary Hague demanded that the perpetrators of mass torture and killings in Syria blamed on the Assad regime and disclosed by a recent report be brought to justice. Ofcom, the communications watchdog, cleared three British broadcasters of breaching the broadcasting code for airing an interview with hate preacher Anjem Choudary, former leader of banned Islamic group Al Muhajiroun, following the murder of a British soldier by Islamist extremists.
Counterterrorism police arrested a man at Stansted airport as he arrived from Turkey. An appellate court rejected the case of a Pakistani man whose father was killed by a US drone strike. Five of seven terror suspects to be freed from security restrictions later this month are deemed highly dangerous and likely to engage in terrorist activity involving travel to Syria, Somalia, and Pakistan.
A Syrian defector from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham said the terror group is training British, European, and American recruits to conduct terror attacks in their home countries. Some 500 British fighters are believed to have traveled to Syria, and about 50 are thought to have already returned home. Jihadists in Syria seeking to return to their home countries are reportedly funneled through al Qaeda safe houses in Turkey. Responding to criticism about military budget cuts, former Defense Secretary Liam Fox said the UK is "the world's eighth biggest economy with the fourth biggest defense budget."
Scotland Yard is questioning two women suspected of terrorist activity; one was arrested at Heathrow airport on Jan. 16 as she tried to board a flight for Istanbul with a large quantity of cash, and the other was arrested in northwest London yesterday. A man from Sheldon, Birmingham, was arrested at Gatwick airport yesterday on suspicion of having attended a terrorist training camp in Syria. Yusuf Sawar and Mohammed Ahmed, of Handsworth, Birmingham, appeared in court to face charges of traveling to Syria for terrorist purposes; Sawar had said he intended to join a group linked to the Al Nusrah Front. Six convicted terrorists from Birmingham who planned a bombing campaign in the UK have been ordered to pay, mainly to Muslim Aid, the £33,000 they obtained fraudulently while posing as collectors.
Police arrested two men at Heathrow airport who had arrived on a flight from Istanbul. The two Birmingham men are thought to have traveled to Syria for jihad in May 2013. A British ship will join the convoy that is removing Syria's chemical weapons for disposal.