Terror suspect being extradited to U.S.
By Elaine Ly and Josh Levs, CNN
updated 9:52 AM EDT, Thu September 4, 2014
- Haroon Rashid Aswat will be extradited to the U.S.
- He is among suspects in a jihad training camp case
- The case dates back to 1999
- Radical cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri is among his alleged co-conspirators
(CNN) — Britain’s Royal Courts of Justice agreed Thursday to send to the United States a man accused of helping organize a jihad training camp in Oregon.
Haroon Rashid Aswat is wanted in a case dating back to 1999.
Aswat, a British national, was arrested in Zambia in 2005 and sent to Britain, where he has fought extradition for years.
In a federal criminal complaint, prosecutors said Aswat participated in efforts to build the camp in Bly, Oregon, in 1999 and 2000.
The camp “would be a place that Muslims could attend to receive various types of training, including military-style jihad training, in preparation for a community of Muslims to make ‘hijrah’ (to immigrate) to Afghanistan,” the criminal complaint stated. “Once in Afghanistan, the men in the community would have gained enough familiarity with weapons at the Bly training camp to fight jihad in Afghanistan.”
“As it was used by the conspirators in this case, the term ‘jihad’ meant defending Islam against its enemies through violence and armed aggression, including killing the enemies of Islam, if necessary, in order to expel non-believers from holy Muslim lands,” the U.S. Justice Department said in a 2007 statement on the case.
Among his co-conspirators is radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, prosecutors say.
Background on Aswat
Former CNN Producer Kevin Bohn contributed to this report.