James Murray, Daily Express (London), February 10, 2008
FURY erupted last night after it emerged that a boy of 12 who trained to be a suicide bomber is being allowed to attend school in Britain.
Parents of his classmates are unaware of the Afghan child’s terrifying past. MP Philip Davies said the youngster should be removed from school immediately so a proper investigation can take place into any potential danger he poses.
The Tory MP for Shipley, West Yorks, said: “This boy has had a tragic upbringing through no fault of his own. But there should be a detailed and thorough look at his past and the threat he could pose in the future. I am sure that the parents in the school would be concerned if they were told about it.”
Extremists recruited the boy shortly after his father, a Taliban fighter, was shot dead by British soldiers in a gun battle. One elder told him: “You must avenge his death by becoming a martyr.” During intensive mountain training the youngster learned how to handle explosives and sophisticated detonators. He even went on dummy missions with bags taped to his body.
They have been brainwashed to carry out attacks, to become martyrs
Taliban fanatics instructed him to wander towards British patrols, pretending to be a tearful lost child, and once surrounded by soldiers—or taken to an Army base—he would blow himself up.
But after weeks of secret training the boy blurted out to his mother what he was doing. She could not bear the thought of losing a son as well as her husband, so worried family members pulled all their resources together and paid for him to be spirited out of Afghanistan to escape the clutches of evil Taliban leaders.
After a traumatic journey across several countries, the boy was smuggled into Britain, probably hidden on the back of a lorry. Later he was questioned by immigration officials in Croydon, Surrey.
They were stunned when full details of the boy’s shocking story emerged. One source said: “There was so much detail that was little doubt he was telling the truth. You could see the terror in his eyes.
“He was being brainwashed to be a suicide bomber and was on the verge of carrying out an attack which would have claimed many British lives. Yet, to save him from death, his family sent him to the very country which sent the soldier who killed his father. The child has gone through a terrible experience and needs a strong, stable environment to unwind from all the pressure he has been put under. In Britain he is being offered that environment, which will hopefully convince him how evil his Taliban masters had been.”
The boy has been granted asylum because of the threat to his safety in his homeland, and the authorities found him a place at a state secondary school at a secret location.
He is said to have settled down well and is mixing with other children. It is understood the head of the school has been told about his past but parents have no idea that their children are sharing a classroom with a trained suicide bomber.
The security services have been alerted to the situation and are concerned about the risk of him falling into the hands of Al Qaeda supporters in Britain, who may attempt to force him to become a suicide bomber here.
Patrick Mercer, a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee, said: “The progress of this boy through school should be closely monitored. But the real emphasis should be on tracking down those people in this country who support the Taliban and who are involved in the trafficking of young people.”
Terror expert George Kassimeris, who lectures at Wolverhampton University, added: “There are large numbers of children trafficked to Britain who have been radicalised to support the cause of the Islamic Jihadists.
“They have been brainwashed to carry out attacks, to become martyrs. The authorities will have to create deradicalisation programmes to make them change their ways, otherwise there is a potential that they will become terrorists in this country.”
Last week the US military released shocking pictures of Al Qaeda recruits in Iraq—boys as young as 10 being trained in assassination, kidnapping and suicide bombings.
In Afghanistan last year there were 140 suicide bombings against allied troops.