London mosque's reopening blocked

Supporters of the Muslim preacher Imam Abu Hamza al-Masri - detained in Britain since May following an extradition request from the United States - have prevented the mosque where he used to preach from reopening.

    Abu Hamza's followers outside the mosque at Finsbury Park

    Leaders at the mosque in Finsbury Park, a neighbourhood in northwest London, abandoned plans to open up the building when confronted by scores of Hamza followers praying in front of it on Friday.

    On 6 August several hundred supporters disrupted the official reopening of the mosque, closed last year after an anti-terrorist raid.

    Egyptian-born Hamza, 46, is facing extradition to the United States on 11 "terrorism"-related charges, notably regarding a hostage-taking in Yemen in 1998 and an alleged al-Qaida training camp operating in Oregon in 1999-2000. His hearing was adjourned in July until mid-October.

    The mosque was shut down early last year in what was seen as a British Government response to Abu Hamza's outspoken sermons. Unfazed, the hook-handed radical cleric continued to preach on the sidewalk outside the premises.

    Apart from the extradition proceedings, Abu Hamza - currently held at a prison in southeast London - is challenging an attempt by London to withdraw the British citizenship he acquired through marriage in the early 1990s.

    His Egyptian citizenship was revoked in May this year.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Will you push the boundaries or play it safe?

    Will you push the boundaries or play it safe?

    Curate an art exhibition and survive Thailand's censorship crackdown in this interactive game.