Woolwich attacker was known to banned Islamist group

Last Updated: Fri, May 24, 2013 06:33 hrs

One of the two suspected terrorists, who hacked a man believed to be a British soldier to death on a busy London street on Wednesday, was known to a banned Islamist organization and security services.

The Independent has learned that the terrorist was also known as Mujahid.

Anjem Choudary, the former leader of the group, Al Muhajiroun, confirmed that he had known the man who was seen in video after the horrific killing waving a cleaver with bloodied hands and making political statements.

Choudary said Mujahid, who had converted to Islam in 2003, had stopped attending meetings of Al Muhajiroun and its successor organisations two years ago.

He said Mujahid, a British-born Nigerian, was a pleasant, quiet guy. He was interested in Islam, in memorising the Koran, but he had disappeared about two years ago.

The banned organization was founded in 1983 by Islamist Omar Bakri Muhammad, and it became notorious for attempting to justify the 9/11 attacks and fomenting Islamist rhetoric in Britain.

According to the report, Choudary, who has long been a controversial figures in Britain's Islamist circles, has been an outspoken critic of British military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But he insisted that he had never preached that attacks on British troops or security personnel in Britain were justified. (ANI)

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