The Sunday Times reports:
AN Islamic cleric, whose supporters led a hate-filled protest against British troops returning from Iraq, has urged his followers to give cash to front-line mujaheddin fighters.
A recording has emerged of Anjem Choudary, a self-styled sharia judge and former leader of the banned group Al-Muhajiroun, telling his followers to stop spending their money on their families and divert it to Muslim soldiers waging jihad, or holy war.
There were demands for Choudary to be investigated by police. He has previously called for British women to be forced to wear burqas and for adulterers to be killed. Several radical preachers have previously been jailed for urging British Muslims to give money to Al-Qaeda-linked insurgents in Iraq.
Patrick Mercer, chairman of the Commons subcommittee on counterterrorism, said: “It is crucial that Choudary is investigated by the police and if the evidence stacks up he must be charged.” Geoffrey Bindman, a leading lawyer, said: “There’s an element of ambiguity in the term ‘mujaheddin’ but in the context it’s possible he would be held to be seeking to raise money for terrorist purposes.”
Choudary supporters taped a meeting last year at which he was preaching to disciples. A copy of the recording has been passed to The Sunday Times.
At one point on the tape Choudary says: “People [are] looking for a place for their money to go so they can go to the front line and they can’t find it. You should not think to yourself ‘my money, my money’ . . . you have [an] opportunity to carry da’wah [the spread of Islam] to society . . . and you have money that can go towards the da’wah, you have money that can go towards the mujaheddin. One day you will not have that. Then you will regret the time when you said, ‘When I had that time, when I was with people, I did not invest it properly’.”
Choudary added: “When you are working collectively . . . people supporting the mujaheddin, people collecting money for the da’wah or giving money to the mujaheddin, he [the ‘shaytan’, or devil] will come to you then. He will divert you, he will say to you, ‘This money is needed for your family’.”