UK gets blowback for harboring anti-Gaddafi activists

As each hour passes we learn more about Salman Abedi. What we don’t know yet is his exact journey from Manchester-born boy to suicide bomber.

The BBC has been told by a Muslim community worker that members of the public called the police anti-terrorism hotline about Abedi’s extreme and violent views several years ago.

We don’t know how the police responded to these reported hotline calls – but we have also learnt that earlier this year, Abedi’s behaviour again raised concerns.

According to our sources, he told local people about the value of dying for a cause.

He also made hardline statements about suicide bombings and the conflict in Libya.

Abedi’s parents fled Libya as opponents of Colonel Gaddafi’s regime.

Libya, alongside its North African neighbours, has been a centre for the rise of modern Islamist political movements.

These movements were originally dedicated to overthrowing dictatorial regimes and, to varying extents, promoting the idea of Islamic government.

The Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) wanted to overthrow Gaddafi and became the dominant revolutionary force in the country in the 1990s, until the dictator began turning the screw.

Many of those with Islamist connections tried to flee – and many of them were granted refuge in the UK.

Salman Abedi’s father, Ramadan, was part of the broad network of opponents who supported those Islamist anti-Gaddafi aims. He arrived in the UK in the early 1990s.

We have been told by senior LIFG sources that he was not a member of the organisation. But he was known to be a dissident with some of the same political goals.

That brings us to south Manchester. It has long been a centre of Libyan politics in the UK, if not Europe.

It’s where the British government gave refuge to many of those Gaddafi opponents – Birmingham and London being the other locations.

Some of the Libyans in the UK, and in particular from Manchester, were later suspected by the security services of being aligned to al-Qaeda.

I have spoken to some of these men down the years. They say their jihad was against Gaddafi alone. They wanted him overthrown.

And overthrow him they eventually did – with the help of the British and Americans.

As the Arab Spring grew and Gaddafi began to wobble, these dissidents – and a fair few of their British-raised sons – returned to their revolutionary roots.

Many joined the February 17th Martyr’s Brigade, one of the key fighting units in that war. We have been told that Salman Abedi’s father was part of the group who left the UK for one last battle against Gaddafi.

The BBC has been trying to put these questions to Ramadan Abedi. Shortly before that was to happen, Mr Abedi was arrested by security forces in Libya.

There were others from Manchester who went to fight – and most of them lived very close to each other.

Just a mile away from the Abedi home lived Abdal Raouf Abdallah – now jailed for five-and-a-half years for terrorism offences.

Abdallah was among the young British-Libyans who fought to overthrow the dictator – and he nearly paid for it with his life. He was shot in the back and was paralysed from the waist down.

He returned home proud. But at his later trial, prosecutors said his revolutionary fervour led him to facilitate the travel of other men from Manchester to join terror groups in Syria.

He protested at his trial that he hated the so-called Islamic State group – as did one of the men he was helping, Muslim convert Stephen Mustafa Gray.

Not all of the men from this area were of Libyan heritage. One of the biggest IS recruiters locally was a man called Raphael Hostey – he lived halfway between the Abedis and Abdallah. My colleague Steve Swann has previously reported on how this young man played a key role in getting others from Manchester into Syria.

In all, south Manchester has been one of the hotspots of Syria-linked militancy in the UK: Six have gone to fight and die, at least four more are believed to be fighting and another half a dozen jailed.

Those cases and others that cannot be reported for legal reasons give some indication of a triangle of Islamist-jihadist connections between Manchester, Libya and Syria and you can read more them in our unique database of recent British jihadists.


there is likely to be more waiting in manchester..its geographically and statistically a fact..

the connection to libya is strong..its part of the black flag waving groups who overthrew gaddafi..and the ability to move from libya to uk and back would have to be a worry?

“Those cases and others that cannot be reported for legal reasons give some indication of a triangle of Islamist-jihadist connections between Manchester, Libya and Syria”


~ by seeker401 on May 29, 2017.

3 Responses to “UK gets blowback for harboring anti-Gaddafi activists”

  1. “According to our sources, he told local people about the value of dying for a cause.”

    When people talk this way in a society and all the other violent militant verbiage and personality is expressed, as the article records, it makes me wonder even more about the society than the individual(s) who carry out the violence. Did not anybody say “no” to this man or share their opinion with him? Maybe the society lives in a sense of paralyzation, hostage, or impotence? How much “hands off” is the legal system when this much militant influence is over the society? Obviously, neighborhoods where gangs dominant, people do live in fear, not just the innocent people, but the violent members themselves are violent in order to stabilize, protect, and order their chaotic and pre-existing violent situation.

    This man lived in Libya and then jumped to back another war in Syria. Local gangs in neighborhoods grow up in a local violent situation. This man grew up in a global neighborhood. He had a global consciousness. He felt the need to be involved in various global violent situations, Libya and Syria.

  2. Reblogged this on World4Justice : NOW! Lobby Forum..

  3. “Those cases and others that cannot be reported for legal reasons give some indication of a triangle of Islamist-jihadist connections between Manchester, Libya and Syria” & maybe &THEY-M15&16 &

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: