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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 October 2018

Interim manager appointed at mosque where extremist preached

Imam of Fazal Ellahi Charitable Trust encouraged worshippers to join ISIS

Kamran Hussain propagated the views of ISIS to children as young as three (West Midlands Police)
Kamran Hussain propagated the views of ISIS to children as young as three (West Midlands Police)

A UK Muslim charity has had its management temporarily replaced after an inquiry found it failed to stop an extremist preaching at its mosque.

The interim manager will run the administration of the Fazal Ellahi Charitable Trust, excluding trustees, after the UK Charity Commission said it failed to comply with UK laws.

The regulator opened an inquiry on 16 April 2018 over concerns the charity’s Stoke-on-Trent premises were used to condone or support terrorism. On 22 September 2017 its Imam, 40-year-old Kamran Hussain was convicted on six counts of encouragement of terrorism and two counts of encouraging support for a proscribed organisation – ISIS.

The trust ran a mosque and religious classes but was investigated over concerns it was propagating terrorism.

Hussain was sentenced to six and half years in jail after telling children as young as three that martyrdom was better than school. Often he would deliver his speeches in front an ISIS flag and laud the values of terrorist groups.

“Inshallah...we will see the black flag rise over Big Ben and Downing Street," he told a congregation.

The preacher supported the virtues of killing, martyrdom and violent jihad and endorsed the efforts of those who had undertaken such acts, West Midlands Police said at the time.

Detective Chief Superintendent Matt Ward of West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit added "Hussain was espousing hatred and violence as well as clearly demonstrating his support for (ISIS) through the content in his sermons.”

An undercover officer was sent to record Hussain’s sermons where the preacher would tell worshippers the UK government funded far-right groups to attack Muslims.

"The kuffar (unbeliever) will attack you and kill you," he was reported to have told them.

"Stand up and be ready to sacrifice, be ready to stand in the face of the elements of Shaytan (Satan), be ready to spill blood and have your blood spilt."

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Read more:

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This appointment of an interim manager to the charity is a temporary and protective power that will be reviewed at regular intervals, the regulator said.

The Charity Commission has clamped down in recent years on UK Muslim charities alleged to be pushing extremist ideologies. Since the start of 2014 it has opened more than 35 enquiries related to Muslim groups and causes, including those accused of funnelling funds to terrorist in Syria.

A report by UK lawmakers in 2014 found that the commission was “too willing to accept what charities tell it, without verifying or challenging the claims made”.