Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Al-Qaeda terrorists recruiting in Welsh prisons

"Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile."

Al-Qaeda terrorists have targeted Muslim criminals being held in Welsh jails in an attempt to recruit them for a holy war, probation officers have said. The officers believe that attempts have been made to convert one in 10 of the estimated number of Muslims across Welsh prisons, including Parc and Cardiff.

The campaign is being led by 150 hardcore Muslim terrorists who are operating on the inside of jails across Wales and England, preying on young, petty criminals who are serving time for minor offences.

It was recently revealed that the Ministry of Justice had set up a unit to tackle the “risks of extremism and radicalism in prison.” A report carried out by the Prison Officers’ Association has called for extremist prisoners to be kept away from any inmates who could be vulnerable to radicalisation — and even asked that they be housed under one roof.

It has pointed to an intelligence report claiming that there were specific threats to kidnap and behead an officer at Frankland prison in County Durham. Harry Fletcher, assistant general secretary of the probation officers’ union Napo, said that plans underway to house all terrorist prisoners in one “super prison” were misplaced.

It could lead to terrorist inmates housed in Welsh prisons being transported out and into separate stronghold prisons. But Mr Fletcher said: “That would be very unwise. There is a general view that if the prisoners are concentrated they get more organised. If something went wrong it could go disastrously wrong, like a mass breakout.”

“Staff think that around 10% of those [Muslims in Welsh prisons] have been involved in conversions or attempted conversions over the last two years. Staff believe the traditional assessment tools are of limited value with terrorists.”

It is estimated that there are about 140-150 terrorist prisoners in jails in Wales and England — the vast majority of whom are Muslims. The total number of Muslim prisoners is estimated at 8,000.

One of the most notorious converts to al-Qaeda in prison was shoe bomber Richard Reid, now 35, who tried to blow up a Transatlantic flight in 2001 with bombs in his trainers. He had previously served time inside after being found guilty of committing petty crimes.

Muslims are nearly four times more likely to be in jail in England and Wales compared with the rest of the population, according to the figures released in 2006.

In a written parliamentary reply, Justice Secretary Jack Straw said that at the end of June 2006 there were 8,243 prisoners declaring themselves as Muslim out of a total prison population of 77,982 at the time.

The number represents 11 percent of all prisoners in contrast to Muslims being just 3 percent of the country’s population at the last census in 2001, when some 1.5 million people declared themselves as Muslim.

The figures show a very high percentage of the Muslims in jail are foreign nationals, some 3,285 of the prisoners, equivalent to 40 percent. Among the foreign nationals, the highest number was 416 from Pakistan, followed by 322 from Somalia, 259 from Iraq, 221 from Turkey, 185 from Nigeria, 179 each from Bangladesh and Nigeria and 163 from Jamaica.

Straw suggested that the higher number of Muslims in prison may partly reflect the age profile of prisoners, with most aged between 18 and 34. Asians of this age made up 31 percent of the total, while the percentage among whites was 22 percent.

Source: www.bnp.org.uk

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