UK man wanted to create child jihadists, gets convicted

Mar 04, 2018, 08:49 IST | Agencies

A man who used his role as an unqualified teacher to try and recruit an "army" of children to commit terror attacks was convicted in a British court on Friday

Umar Ahmed Haque
Umar Ahmed Haque

A man who used his role as an unqualified teacher to try and recruit an "army" of children to commit terror attacks was convicted in a British court on Friday.

Umar Ahmed Haque, 25, tried to radicalise children to commit "a multi-faceted attack on businesses and communities in London", according to a Metropolitan Police statement.

Haque, from east London, showed pupils at an after-school madrasa videos of "extreme terrorist violence" and made them "roleplay terrorists" stabbing police officers. His two accomplices, Abuthaher Mamun, 29, and Muhammad Abid, 27, were also convicted at London's Old Bailey court.

"Haque was a dangerous man who was inspired by attacks in Europe and Westminster. He wanted to orchestrate numerous attacks at once, using guns, knives, bombs and large cars to kill innocent people," said Dean Haydon, head of the Met Police Counter Terrorism Command.

"We recovered a number of exercise books from his home and it was evident from his notes that his plan was a long-term one. Further investigation revealed that Haque had also attempted to radicalise 55 children aged 11 to 14 while working at the Ripple Road Mosque. They told police how Haque made them roleplay terrorists, with the children being made to stab the 'police officers' to death. "The children were paralysed by fear and too afraid to confide in anyone," he added.

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