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Last Updated: Wednesday, 4 July 2007, 18:56 GMT 19:56 UK
Leaders to 'hound out' extremists
Searches in Liverpool
Searches are continuing at properties in Liverpool
Muslim leaders in Merseyside have promised that extremists will be "hounded out" of their community.

Elders spoke out on Wednesday after it emerged that two of the men being held after the failed UK car bombings are cousins with links to the North West.

Dr Sabeel Ahmed, 26, lived in Liverpool and worked at Halton Hospital, Runcorn, with 27-year-old Mohammed Haneef.

On Wednesday, Mohammad Akbar Ali, a Liverpool Muslim elder, joined police in speaking out against extremism.

"If anyone has any ideas that perhaps they will find some sanctuary or some place to hide after engaging in such activities or entertaining such ideas then he is absolutely wrong," he said.

"We have no place in our hearts or in our mosques or in our areas for such people.

Zakia Ahmed
I'm sure they are innocent
Zakia Ahmed, suspect's mother

"Let them be warned that they will be hounded out of these areas."

Mr Ali urged older members of the Muslim community to set an example to younger people.

"Some of them are perhaps misguided, and some of them have been thoroughly brainwashed in one way or another," he said.

Mr Ali said one solution was to establish counselling centres where elders could take in any young people with "very misguided ideas about Islam".

Speaking at a joint press conference with Merseyside Police, mosque leaders said it was possible the two bombing suspects had worshipped in Liverpool but they were not known in the community.

Long search

Officers were continuing to conduct forensic searches of two addresses in Liverpool on Wednesday night.

Supt Rowley Moore, of Merseyside Police, said: "I'm unable to say at this stage when that work will finish but it is extremely slow, painstaking work."

Relatives of Sabeel Ahmed have been protesting his innocence to journalists in Bangalore, India.

His mother, Zakia Ahmed, said: "Definitely I was shocked to hear about it. Innocent people have been caught.

"They both are innocent. I'm sure they are innocent," she said.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
The family of the suspects talk about their arrest



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