Monday, 4 January 2016

Hindu convert Abu Rumaysah suspected to be new Jihadi John, was "sensitive and shy"

Update (10/1) 'Prepared to Die,' sister says Dhar is unwell and needs intensive care

Update (10/1) MI5 tried to recruit Indian-origin 'new Jihadi John' for IS.

Revealed: 'New Jihadi John' travelled to Syria with his wife and four children under the noses of British security services while on bail for terror offences 





The British ISIS fanatic accused of being the 'new Jihadi John' was able to 'breeze' out of the UK and flee to Syria with his family while on bail for terror offences, it was revealed today.
Siddhartha Dhar, 32, also known as Abu Rumaysah, left Britain despite being forced to hand in his passport and being on a terror watchlist for encouraging terrorism and supporting banned group Al-Muhajiroun.

Within 24 hours of being arrested in September 2014 he was able to travel from London to Paris by coach with his wife and four children before arriving in Syria via Turkey.
MI6 are now racing to identify whether he is the militant with an English accent in a new ISIS execution video where five alleged British spies were killed and he was seen shooting one in the head.
Tonight, two plain-clothed officers visited his family home in Palmers Green, north London, and spent around 90 minutes with his two sisters. Scotland Yard refused to comment on why they were there.

Earlier today, Dhar's sister, Konika, from North London, said: 'If it is him, bloody hell am I shocked? I am going to kill him myself. He is going to come back and I am going to kill him if he has done this.
'I can't believe it. This is just so shocking for me. I don't know what the authorities are doing to confirm the identity, but I need to know if it is.'
Dhar, 32, was released on bail after his arrest in September 2014 and ordered to hand in his passport. He was a known supporter of banned groups, had links to hate preachers and was seen at Islamist rallies in London.Dhar, also known as Abu Rumaysah, is believed to have met, and possibly mentored, Michael Adebolajo, one of the murderers of Fusilier Lee Rigby. The father-of-four from Walthamstow was one of nine men detained on suspicion of encouraging terrorism and supporting the banned group Al-Muhajiroun. 

 Sensitive and shy


But less than 24 hours after walking free, he took a coach from London to Paris and headed to the ISIS war zone with his young family. 
The former bouncy castle salesman later posted a picture of himself cradling his baby while brandishing an AK-47 to taunt security services whose blunders allowed him to escape. 
Prior to posting the photo, Dhar taunted the police on Twitter for clumsily allowing him to slip through their fingers: 'What a shoddy security system Britain must have to allow me to breeze through Europe to the Islamic State.' 

He also boasted how he had fooled MI5: 'My Lord (Allah) made a mockery of British intelligence and surveillance. Make hijrah (flight) Muslims. Place your trust in Allah.'
Prior to fleeing the UK, he also appeared live on the BBC and declared his support for ISIS.
A video shows him being interviewed on Sunday Morning Live in 2014 during a debate about why British Muslims were joining ISIS. On the show, he said: 'Well I don't think it is just a question of myself supporting Islamic State or the caliphate.
'What I can say is that Muslims cherish the Koran and for over 90 years we have been living without a caliphate and many of the rules within the Koran cannot be implemented. 'Now we have this caliphate I think we will see many Muslims globally seeing it as an opportunity for the Koran to be fully realised.' His mother said she could not be sure if it was her son in the latest ISIS execution video but was shocked by the revelations, and never suspected he had terrorist links, describing him as 'sensitive and shy'.

Speaking at her home mother Sobita Dhar said: 'These are the most difficult questions to answer - I just cannot say. I'm not sure within myself whether it's the truth or not.
'I last saw him before he went off to Syria two years ago.' 
Terror expert Raffaello Pantucci, director of international security studies at Royal United Services, also believed the executioner's voice sounded like Dhar's.

He said: 'He sounds a bit like Abu Rumaysah from Al-Muhajiroun videos. From watching him in Al-Muhajiroun videos and this new video he sounds very similar. 'The masked man sounds like he is from London. ISIS is full of people who are from all over the place, but he seems educated, given he uses the word 'imbecile' a number of times. 'Jihadi John was a bit of a rudeboy from a west London crew and was a bit laddish, but this guy doesn't sound as 'street' as Jihadi John.'

Online news magazine VICE, which interviewed Dhar in 2014, also claimed the executioner's 'voice and speech pattern' was similar to the British fugitive. Speaking in the documentary titled Escape To The Islamic State, Dhar recalls the bouncy castle business he ran in the UK before becoming a jihadist. Several Twitter users, including respected Al Rai correspondent Elijah Magnier, have also raised the possibility he is the killer militant.
 
It is possible that a different voice was dubbed over the footage after it was filmed. However, linguistics expert Jane Setter believes the militant was speaking at the scene. The Reading University professor told MailOnline: 'Unlike the Jihadi John video, the movements of the speaker's jaw are much more discernible.
'This leads me to believe he is most likely speaking 'live' and not that the masked face has been overdubbed later.'


Proclaiming his love for ISIS and the importance of the fight against the West, Dhar wrote: 'The Islamic State will punish the tyrants in the West. 'The army of Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is coming. Rejoice O Muslims.'

Neighbours speak out


Siddhartha Dhar had publicly stated that he wanted to live under the Islamic State in Syria.
Speaking from his Walthamstow home, a former neighbour who did not want to be identified, said he knew something was wrong when he saw Dhar on TV protesting against British soldiers returning from tours of the Middle East.
He said: 'I think he is a scumbag. We first new that he was a wrong'un when we saw him on TV when British soldiers were returning. That was not even a year after we moved in. 
'At first he seemed quite normal. They took in parcels for most people on the street. 'One day I was just throwing my rubbish away and I found all these flyers in the bin that said 'Muslims against Crusades' and talked about Sharia Law in Waltham Forest.
'They tried to say that it was a peaceful organisation but we knew it wasn't. He was one of the people burning poppies and in Whitechapel telling women to cover up and gay people not to be gay.'

'He never worked. He used to come by occasionally with a van full of bouncy castle equipment but we always thought it was a ploy,' the neighbour claimed.  'There were really dodgy characters that would come to the house. All men in religious dress just hanging around looking a bit suspect.

'When the council came to sort out the house for the new tenant they found the cellar was full of the flyers and temporary cots that had gone mouldy. In a 2013 interview with Vice News, he also talked about his conversion after 9/11 and described David Cameron and MPs as 'the real preachers of hate and violence... who are allowing soldiers to fire bullets of extremism at men women and children in Afghanistan.'

He told the website: 'We believe that whenever the sharia is established, the pure Islamic state maybe in Iraq or Syria, one day the leader will wage jihad and annexe Britain into the Islamic state.

'We are not going to forget Europe, we are not going to forget Britain, the armies will be sent here to conquer these lands.' 
A few weeks before his arrest, he told one interviewer that he was willing to renounce his British citizenship if it meant he was allowed to travel. Dhar was also interviewed by CBS News's 60 Minutes programme about radicalisation in the UK, telling presenter Clarissa Ward that he was unable to love his mother because she was not a Muslim. 

It is understood that Dhar is of Indian origin and was brought up a Hindu before converting to Islam. He was a key member of Al-Muhajiroun and offshoot groups such as the Shariah Project, masterminding 'roadshows' in London that aimed to recruit troubled youngsters to Islam.

Ms Dhar said she had not seen her brother for around 15 months, when he reportedly travelled to Syria to join ISIS. She had barely heard from him since, despite repeatedly emailing and phoning him.

She added: 'I just feel as though I don't even know who my brother is any more. I haven't seen him in over a year. 'He has called just to speak to my mum a couple of times since he has gone out, just to say he is ok, but he would never say that he is not ok, so how can I know that he is?

'I just feel frustrated and I give up, because I feel, 'What do you want me to do to save him? What can I do to better the situation?''
Ms Dhar, who is studying law, said despite the allegations of his involvement with ISIS he is still 'human'. 




She added: 'Obviously with my brother's image it is very hard for people to understand that he is human too, but he really is. If you met him before, he was nothing like this.'
Ms Dhar condemned the threats made in the video, in which the masked figure labelled David Cameron an 'imbecile' and a puppet of the US.
She said: 'I don't know if it is him (her brother), and I hope it is not, but if it is, worse case scenario then he has made a direct threat to the prime minister, which is terrible and awful.'
She also called on the Government to do more to help those who have been radicalised and provide a route for them to return to the UK, saying that her brother was 'trapped' in a catch-22 situation.
She said: 'We need to provide that alternative to the fighters out there and we need to make them realise that they are human too, they can still come back, as long as they are sorry and can abide by our laws and show a genuine attempt to want to become deradicalised.'
Ms Dhar added: 'I think it would be better if foreign fighters who are mainly British who have gone out there and realised their mistake can know that they can still come back.
'I would like to take on the project to deradicalise my brother. I think I can do it. But at the moment the way it looks as though it is a catch-22 situation - they can't do anything, they are trapped.

'You are not allowing them to come back, yet you are saying you can't preach whatever you want out there so we are going to (use a) drone (to attack) you, so what option are you giving them?'
Ms Dhar added: 'They need to know it is not the end of the world and you can still come back.
'The reason why I say that is because when I last spoke to my brother, about a year ago, I was crying, saying, 'Why don't you just come home, you can live at our house, I will move out'.
'I was trying to give him a solution, an alternative, and then he said to me, 'Look, if I come back I will get arrested'.'
Ms Dhar said her brother converted more than 10 years ago, and her memories of her brother are from when they were children and teenagers.
She said: 'He was a very pleasant boy, and I know it may be hard to believe but he still is, and I still believe that he still can be that person.'
His mother also defended his character as a child, saying: 'He was sensitive, very sensitive. He was shy, very shy. And that's who I know. This is why it's very difficult for me at this time.'
Today, she said that the allegations had raised difficult questions, but could not confirm her daughter's belief.
She said: 'I'm just hearing things from the media - I really have to get confirmation within myself that's it's him before I confirm it.
'I have just seen the video yes, but not all of it. I heard the voice, yes, but I don't know, I'm not sure of the voice.
'Yes, I've spoken to her about the video, but I don't remember her saying that. If she told a journalist she thinks it is her brother, then she thinks it.
Asked whether she noticed any extremist tendencies in her son before he left, Sobita said: 'Nothing. Nothing of that. Nothing whatsoever.
'Nothing, nothing whatsoever. Absolutely not. What I know about him is that he is the kind of son that is... too good to say. 
Asked what she would say to her son, she said: 'It depends on what he says to me, on whether it is true or not. As I far as I know, I am sure about his character.
'I definitely know him as a good person, no doubt about that.'
The masked fanatic in the latest ISIS video has been compared to feared British executioner Mohammed Emwazi, dubbed Jihadi John, who was killed in a drone strike in November after appearing in several beheading videos. 
In the ten-minute footage, the executioner threatens Prime Minister David Cameron and vows that ISIS will one day occupy Britain before shooting the alleged spies in the head.

Intelligence analysts are expected to employ the same techniques used to successfully unmask and track down Emwazi, including voice analysis and possibly even vein-recognition technology that mapped the executioner's hands. 
They will also be hunting for clues to the identity of a young English-speaking boy who also appears in the video.  
Dressed in military fatigues and a black bandanna bearing the white mark of ISIS, the boy declares: 'We will kill kuffar [non believers]'.

More than 800 Britons have travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight for Islamic State, including families from Luton, Bradford and London.
 


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