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Islam,Terrorism and Jihad ( 11 Dec 2009, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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How British Muslim Adam Khatib became a bomb plotter

By Steve Swann


Khatib became interested in radical Islam at school

A British Muslim has been convicted of conspiring to murder civilians in a "deadly terrorist attack".

Adam Khatib, a factory worker from Walthamstow, east London, was part of a terror cell taking orders from Pakistan.

The cell was led by Abdullah Ahmed Ali who is already serving a life sentence for plotting to blow up transatlantic passenger airliners in what prosecutors described as an act of terrorism "on an almost unprecedented scale".

Khatib, who was a teenager when he was arrested, was a "loyal partner and servant" to Ali, travelling with him to Pakistan where it is believed the men received instructions from militants linked to al-Qaeda.

Prosecutor Peter Wright QC said: "Khatib may not have been informed of the ultimate target, namely passenger aircraft... all that was required of him was an agreement to play his part in bringing about the murder of others."

But it is understood investigators believed Khatib was planning to be one of the team who would take a bomb onto a plane.


Jihadi network

The 23-year-old had gone off the rails as a teenager when he became fascinated by radical Islam.

Signing one of his school assignments "Adam Osama Bin Laden", Khatib became a cause for concern to teachers worried about his increasingly extreme views, including anti-Semitic outbursts in the classroom.

After leaving school, he befriended Abdullah Ahmed Ali, who is six years older. Ali egged on his younger charge and in June 2005 he took him to Pakistan, introducing him to a network of jihadis.

Khatib, who has a Mauritian father and British mother, told the court he was curious to see the world.


Video by Abdullah Ahmed Ali

Abdullah Ahmed Ali was given a life sentence in September

Though it is not known what the two did during their time in Pakistan, Mr Wright told at Woolwich Crown Court: "They may have been home-grown but the direction of these young men came from Pakistan."


They were there at the same time as Assad Sarwar, who is now serving a life sentence for his part as the chief bomb-maker in the conspiracy. Sarwar admitted learning to make bombs in Pakistan.


Soon after Ali and Khatib returned to the UK, the plot became operational. Khatib carried out "methodical, systematic" internet research into the properties of hexamine peroxide, one of the ingredients which Ali planned to use to make improvised explosives disguised in soft drink bottles.


In typed notes Khatib warned his fellow plotters to: "be extremely careful: the powder is extremely volatile and any contact could cause an explosion and when it explodes, it makes a high-pitch popping sound".


Suicide videos

But unknown to them, the cell members were being monitored. A covert police and MI5 surveillance team installed a hidden recording device and a camera in an empty flat Ali was using as his bomb factory.


Khatib - who denied he knew anything about the plot to blow up seven planes in mid-flight over the Atlantic - was one of the few men allowed access into what prosecutors described as the "inner sanctum" at Forest Road where Ali and his right-hand man Tanvir Hussain experimented with prototype detonators.


The two men also used the flat to record their chilling suicide videos, justifying the planned attack. In his, Ali spoke of "floods of martyr operations" against non-Muslims which would scatter "your people's body parts" across the streets.


Though the police did not find a copy of a video recorded by Khatib, evidence heard at Abdullah Ali's trial suggests that Khatib may have been one of the would-be bombers. On the Forest Road bug Ali is heard listing the volunteers for the mission. He mentions "Adam".


During the three years since his arrest, Khatib has maintained he did not know what Ali was plotting. He claimed not to have extreme views though at his home police found jihadi videos including the recorded last will and testament of one of the 9/11 bombers.


But the jury agreed with the prosecution that this was a man "who is wholly subscribed to a violent agenda".