He lived in Pakistan in the 1980s and studied Islamic jurisprudence under the late Dr Abd Allah Azzam.

 

He has lived in Norway as a refugee since 1991 and has been under threat of deportation for more than two years after Norwegian media revealed that he was the founder of Ansar al-Islam, which figures on the United States' list of "terrorist" organisations.

The Norwegian government last month rejected his appeal against the deportation order. But Krekar maintains that the expulsion order is not valid and has taken the authorities to court.

 

Oslo has argued that Krekar violated the conditions of his residency permit by repeatedly returning to Iraq.

 

Citing its international obligations, Oslo has said Krekar would be deported once Iraq adopts a new constitution and when a functioning, legitimate government is in place.

 

US authorities also suspect him of involvement in the August 2003 suicide bombing of the UN mission in Baghdad, and of links with a suspect in the 11 March Madrid bombings last year.

 

Denial


The Iraqi Kurd admits that he founded the group but insists that he no longer heads it. He insists that he presents no threat to Norway, noting that Norwegian police have closed their preliminary investigation into his possible involvement in financing terrorist activities.

Krekar maintains that the expulsion order is not valid and has taken the authorities to court, and has repeatedly denied terrorism allegations and links to al-Qaida.