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Last Updated: Sunday, 13 August 2006, 12:38 GMT 13:38 UK
Ireland 'a fundamentalist haven'
Dr Satardien has appealed to the Irish authorities
Dr Satardien has appealed to the Irish authorities
Ireland has become "a haven for fundamentalism", one of the country's leading Muslim leaders has warned.

Sheikh Dr Shaheed Satardien said there was an "ocean of extremism" spreading among Muslims throughout Ireland.

"Irish Muslim leaders are failing our young people who are embracing fundamentalism," he told the Sunday Tribune newspaper.

Northern Ireland Muslim Abdul Al Jibouri said terrorism went totally against the beliefs of Islam.

"It is very hurtful when people start talking about Islam and Muslim terrorists," he told BBC Radio Ulster's Sunday Sequence programme.

"I have lived in Northern Ireland for many years and we had so many terrorists, but nobody said 'Catholic terrorists' or 'Protestant terrorists'."

He added: "Islam does not encourage people to go and blow people up - this is based on fundamentalists and the way they interpret the Koran.

"Terrorism and active terrorism is totally against Islam and I would be the first person to condemn it."

'Foreign travel'

Dublin-based Dr Satardien, who is regarded as a moderate cleric, told the Sunday Tribune young Muslims were "being torn between two cultures, drawing them into support for terrorism, anti-semitism and a hatred of western democracy".

Young Islamic men were spending long periods in locations such as Pakistan where they were taking part in al-Qaeda terrorist training schools, he told the newspaper.

Abbas Boutrab (passport picture)
Abbas Boutrab was sentenced to six years

"There is an urgent need for the Irish government to introduce strict guidelines on foreign travel," he said.

"Young people go to foreign places where they are being brainwashed and where they are told to reject moderate Islam."

Dr Satardien also urged Irish authorities to monitor the activities of foreign national Muslim leaders who he said were entering the country to promote radical fundamentalism.

Last December, a man with suspected al-Qaeda links was jailed in Belfast for downloading information on how to blow up a passenger jet.

Abbas Boutrab, from Algeria, was arrested in Newtownabbey, near Belfast, over suspected immigration offences.

Police later found computer disks with downloaded bomb-making instructions. He was sentenced to six years in prison.




SEE ALSO
Al-Qaeda terror suspect is jailed
20 Dec 05 |  Northern Ireland
'Weeks' before al-Qaeda judgement
17 Oct 05 |  Northern Ireland
Al-Qaeda court case to continue
12 Oct 05 |  Northern Ireland
'Terrorist manual' found in house
06 Nov 03 |  Northern Ireland



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