[QODLink]
Middle East

Jordan clears Abu Qatada of terrorism charge

Salafi cleric deported from the UK found not guilty of conspiring to carry out terrorism attacks in Jordan.

Last updated: 26 Jun 2014 12:03
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Abu Qatada will still remain in jail pending the results of one more trial scheduled for September [EPA]

Amman -  Abu Qatada has been cleared of plotting a terrorism attack on the American school in Amman for lack of evidence - but the cleric faces other terrorism charges and will remain in prison.

"The court did not find evidence to support charges against [Abu Qatada] that he conspired in late 1998 to carry out a terror attack on the American school in Amman," Ahmad Qatarneh, the judge in the case, said on Thursday.

"Based on that, the court unanimously declares the innocence of [Abu Qatada] for lack evidence."

The Salafi cleric had denied the charges and rejected a claim by another suspect in the case that he had issued a religious decree calling on followers to attack schools. The court found that the second suspect's claims were not sufficient proof to convict Abu Qatada.

But the cleric, who was extradited from the UK last year, will continue to be held because of separate charges related to a plot to attack tourists during Jordan's New Year celebrations in 2000.

RELATED: Jordan releases anti-ISIL Salafi leader


His son, Qatada, told Al Jazeera the family was happy with Thursday's ruling but "justice remains incomplete".

"We congratulate the Muslim nation generally, but the Salafist movement specially, the innocence of Shiekh Abu Qatada from charges against him in this case as we hope for his release soon," Abu Sayyaf, a Jordanian Salafist leader, told Al Jazeera.  

His lawyer, Ghazi Thunaibat, said he was "relieved" by the verdict, but could not give any further comments in order not  to "jeopardise the court ruling for the next case".

Abu Qatada, who was born in Bethlehem, was deported by Britain to Jordan in July 2013 after almost a decade-long legal battle. He arrived facing retrials on the two cases.

Areej Abuqudairi contributed to this report.

330

Source:
Al Jazeera and agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Featured
Pro-Russia leaders' election in Ukraine's east shows bloody conflict is far from a peaceful resolution.
Critics challenge Canberra's move to refuse visas for West Africans in Ebola-besieged countries.
A key issue for Hispanics is the estimated 11.3 million immigrants in the US without papers who face deportation.
In 1970, only two mosques existed in the country, but now more than 200 offer sanctuary to Japan's Muslims.
Hundreds of the country's reporters eke out a living by finding news - then burying it for a price.