Page last updated at 18:29 GMT, Tuesday, 27 January 2009

7/7 'plotter used rocket grenade'

Mohammed Shakil
Mohammed Shakil denies helping to plot the 2005 London bombings

A man accused of helping plan the 7 July London bombings fired guns and grenades at a camp with al-Qaeda-linked terrorists, a court has heard.

Mohammed Shakil, 32, was in Pakistan with bomber Mohammad Sidique Khan at the time, Kingston Crown Court heard.

Convicted terrorist-turned informant Mohammed Junair Babar made the claims.

Mr Shakil, Waheed Ali, 25, and Sadeer Saleem, 28, from Leeds, deny conspiring with the bombers to cause explosions between November 2004 and July 2005.

Mr Ali and Mr Shakil also deny a second charge of conspiracy to attend a place used for terrorist training.

The trio are accused of carrying out a two-day reconnaissance mission in London, including visits to potential targets for the 7 July bombings, such as the London Eye, the Natural History Museum and the London Aquarium.

'Small arms training'

Khan, together with Jermaine Lindsay, Shehzad Tanweer and Hasib Hussain, left 52 dead and hundreds more injured when they set off bombs on London's transport network on 7 July 2005.

Mr Shakil travelled with him to Pakistan to find out whether foreigners were welcome to fight allied forces in Afghanistan, it is claimed.

Giving evidence via videolink from America, where he is awaiting sentence for offences of providing support to al-Qaeda, Babar said he met Mr Shakil in 2003.

They were among a group staying with associates in an apartment in Islamabad when Babar persuaded Khan and Mr Shakil to come to the training camp in the mountains, the witness said.

The group was given training there in physical fitness and small arms use and attended Islamic talks about the virtues of jihad, the court heard.

He said Mr Shakil seemed "comfortable" while handling weapons including an AK-47 rifle, light machine gun and rocket-propelled grenade, with which he successfully "hit the target" while firing across to another mountain.

'Fight jihad'

Babar claimed that both Mr Shakil and Khan said they wanted to fight jihad in Afghanistan and talked about how much it would cost to bring their families over.

He also told the court that a promotional video of the camp was shot to raise money for jihad and featured both Shakil and Khan with their faces covered.

The jury heard that Babar had pleaded guilty in the US to four counts of conspiring to provide material support to al-Qaeda and one count of making a contribution of funds, goods or services to the organisation.

Babar admitted that after being detained in 2004, he had struck a deal with the FBI to provide information in exchange for immunity from prosecution on other matters, including two plots to kill the president of Pakistan.

He admitted telling some lies to the authorities following his arrest but insisted he was now telling the truth.

The trial continues on Wednesday.

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