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24 October 2012

Qatada linked to foiled 'second 9/11' plot: Extremist is spiritual leader of banned network that planned suicide attacks

article-2221705-0390442C000005DC-581_306x423.jpgHate preacher Abu Qatada – who is appealing against deportation from Britain – is linked to fundamentalists accused of plotting a ‘second 9/11’, it emerged yesterday

The extremist cleric is the spiritual leader of Jordan’s banned Salafi network which is accused of planning a string of suicide strikes in the country’s capital, Amman, on tourist hotels, shopping malls and the British and US embassies.

Homes belonging to UK diplomats and ex-pats were also targets.

The plot was foiled at the weekend by the Jordanian authorities who swooped on 11 cell members accused of smuggling weapons and explosives from Syria for the attack.

Qatada spoke by phone to the group’s leader in Jordan just two months before the start of the plot.

Jordanian security officials said several of those seized were members of the Salafi movement, which brands other Muslims who do not follow its hardline theology as infidels.

The cell had adopted the ‘ideology of Al Qaeda’ and nicknamed its plot as ‘9/11 the second,’ it was alleged.

A Jordanian spokesman said: ‘They were plotting deadly terror attacks on vital institutions.’

The Salafi leader in Jordan, convicted terrorist Abed Shehadeh al-Tahawi, yesterday confirmed that at least half of those arrested were members of his group but insisted they had nothing to do with a terror plot. Qatada – a leading member of the Salafis in Jordan before illegally entering Britain in the early 90s – spoke to al-Tahawi by phone in early April while on bail.

Before he was re-arrested, his bail conditions allowed him to make phone calls from his home in Wembley, North London.


He launched an appeal to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission last week, challenging Home Secretary Theresa May’s decision to order his deportation to Jordan. A ruling is expected next month in what is likely to be the last chapter in his seven-year battle to stay in the UK.

Al-Tahawi told the Daily Mail soon after the call [in April]: ‘I strongly advised Abu Qatada not to come back to Jordan because of the difficult security situation faced by the Jihadist Salafi here.


‘If he came back to Jordan he will find a lot of fabricated charges against him and will be sent back to jail and probably tortured.


‘I told him to resist it with everything he could, to the bitter end.’


Al-Tahawi said he believed Qatada had also made contact with some of his other old contacts from the Salafi network while under virtual house arrest at his London home.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2221705/Qatada-li...
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