Preaching in the UK and fighting in Syria. If things keep progressing as they are, he’ll be soon preaching in Syria and fighting in the UK.
British-based preacher shown with armed gang in Syria
Amateur footage appears to show an influential British-based preacher that is leading an armed gang made up of more than a hundred Islamist fighters in Syria.
In a video posted on the internet in the last few days, Abu Basir al-Tartusi can be seen on a balcony surrounded by Kalashnikov waving rebels after apparently capturing a hilltop village in the war-torn country.
Security sources believe that dozens of British extremists, possibly as many as 50, have travelled to Syria to join the fighting and some may have been recruited by Basir.
The security services are concerned that the brutal conflict in Syria could become a “new Afghanistan” drawing in young men who return to Britain radicalised and keen to continue a fight to spread Islam.
A source said the numbers were “small but increasing” and there were concerns about “who they meet and the knowledge they could gain.”
Basir, whose real name is Abdal Munem Mustafa Halima, was running classes at the al-Ansar Institute in Poplar, East London just months ago. He has his own website and his sermons are readily available on the internet.