Police have raided an Islamic tuition centre in London as part of a counter-terrorism investigation. The centre’s manager, Mizanur Rahman, was previously jailed for six years in 2007 after calling for the death of British soldiers serving in Afghanistan.
The Daily Mail says that the Tower Hamlets-based ‘Islamic education and tuition centre’ was one of a number of homes and businesses raided in an operation that targeted the banned group Al Muhajiroun.
The private education centre provides courses in Arabic, the Koran and Sharia law, as well as more typical school subjects such as English, science and mathematics. It promises “an Islamic environment for your child”, adding: “With quality, professional tutors, resources, equipment and small sizes, you can include us in your child’s education programme with confidence.”
After his arrest, Rahman took to Twitter to vent his anger.
the entire arrest was only an excuse to distrupt our lives, steal £10,000s property & restrict us from speaking against their foreign policy
— Mizanur Rahman (@Abu_Baraa1) September 26, 2014
The police snatched this from the frightened hands of my 4 yr old daughter – dangerous terrorist equipment apparently pic.twitter.com/pfTvvCTTNB
— Mizanur Rahman (@Abu_Baraa1) September 27, 2014
According to the Sunday Times, the children of at least two convicted terrorists attend the academy.
Last month, Tower Hamlets council rejected a planning application for the academy’s buildings to be used as an education centre: An official said it was “reportedly exceeding the hours it could legally operate without being registered as a school and therefore being subject to Ofsted inspections and other statutory obligations”.
The centre has so far avoided scrutiny by school inspectors by not offering full-time education. The education department said: “Police and Ofsted have the power to enter premises where they believe full-time education is being illegally provided to children. Councils have a legal obligation to intervene if a child is not receiving a suitable education.”
Last year, Rahman told a crowd of around 300 people outside the Danish embassy that British and American troops should return home “in body bags”. He was filmed saying: “We want to see their blood running in the streets of Baghdad,” adding: “We want to see the Mujahideen shoot down their planes the way we shoot down birds, we want to see their tanks burn in the way we burn their flags.”
He was also investigated earlier this year for praising Nigerian terror group Boko Haram after the kidnap of 300 schoolgirls. He said in a video: “People want to make it out as though history began on the day these girls were taken from – sorry I should say these women – were taken from this high school in Nigeria.
“They didn’t do to these girls what the Nigerian government had been doing to the Muslims all these years. They didn’t rape anybody. They didn’t torture. They didn’t murder any of these girls.”