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Last Updated: Monday, 23 April 2007, 16:07 GMT 17:07 UK
Three men 'urged holy war on web'
Scales of justice
The three men are accused of "close affiliation" with al-Qaeda
Three men linked to al-Qaeda used extremist websites to incite Muslims to join a violent holy war against non-believers, a court has heard.

Younis Tsouli, Waseem Mughal and Tariq Al-Daour used the internet to encourage others to follow the views of Osama Bin Laden, Woolwich Crown Court was told.

The court heard the men, from west London and Kent, believed there was a "global conspiracy" to eradicate Islam.

The men, all in their 20s, deny charges under the 2000 Terrorism Act.

'Close to al-Qaeda'

Mark Ellison, prosecuting, said "behind the apparent outward normality of their daily lives" the three men "firmly believed and supported and set about inciting others to follow an extreme ideology of violent holy war against so-called disbelievers".

"It's the ideology of, most notoriously, Osama Bin Laden and al-Qaeda," he said.

The court was told that the three men had a "particularly close affiliation" with al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Mr Ellison said for those following these extremist views, disbelievers or "kuffars" fell into four groups.

The first two were America, Israel and their allies and individuals or organisations that supported their governments, including voters who elected them.

The third was all Muslim countries who did not govern "by Allah's law alone", along with those who supported them, and the last was any organisation which sought to determine the affairs of Muslim countries, such as the United Nations.

Material seized

In a series of raids on the homes of the three defendants on 21 October 2005, police seized computers, notebooks and digital material.

The court was told that among the items found at the home of Mr Tsouli, 23, who was born in Morocco, was a handwritten list of e-mail addresses and websites linking all three men to the administration of extremist websites.

It is also alleged that a leaflet on using rocket-propelled grenades and pages from The Book of Jihad were also found at the home of Mr Al-Daour, 21, who was born in the United Arab Emirates.

Footage of UK engineer Ken Bigley pleading for his life and American hostages Daniel Pearl and Nick Berg being killed was also found, the court heard.

Each defendant had in his possession a "significant quantity" of material promoting holy war, Mr Ellison said.

The significance lay "in the nature of that material in terms of its usefulness to someone preparing or committing an act of terrorism... or as to whether the defendants incited others to commit acts of terrorism as charged", he said.

'Bosnia plot'

The court was also told that Mr Tsouli and Mr Mughal, 24, who was born in Britain, were part of a plot to commit murder in Bosnia after becoming involved with two Bosnian men arrested in October 2005.

In a video, the Bosnian men, who allegedly had a suicide belt, said they were ready to attack "kuffars" who were killing Muslims in Iraq, Afghanistan and Chechnya, the court heard.

The jury was later shown an hour-long film called The 19 Martyrs about the 11 September 2001 attacks on New York, which was narrated by Osama Bin Laden and was claimed to have been found at Mr Al-Daour's home.

Mr Tsouli, from Shepherd's Bush, west London, Mr Mughal, from Chatham, Kent, and Mr Al-Daour, from Bayswater, west London, all deny inciting others to commit an act of terrorism wholly or partly outside the UK.

Mr Tsouli and Mr Mughal also deny charges of conspiracy to murder.

Mr Al-Daour has also pleaded not guilty to conspiring with others to defraud banks, credit card companies and charge card companies.

The trial was adjourned until Tuesday.




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