Skip to comments.Khadr tied to al-Qaeda as far back as 1988
Posted on 02/01/2003 4:50:44 AM PST by knighthawk
Canada bankrolled man's aid agency during that time
U.S. authorities have tied a Canadian aid worker to the al-Qaeda terrorist network as far back as 1988, almost a decade before the Canadian government cut off funding to his Ottawa-based Muslim charity.
Evidence unsealed by a U.S. judge in Chicago shows Ahmed Said Khadr had dealings with senior al-Qaeda leaders while being financed by the Canadian International Development Agency.
Although CIDA stopped giving aid money to Mr. Khadr in 1997 after he was arrested for allegedly bombing an embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan, the documents allege he was working with al-Qaeda long before that.
The disclosure that CIDA bankrolled an active al-Qaeda member for at least nine years could prove embarrassing for the government aid agency as it prepares to celebrate International Development Week.
The National Post revealed this week that CIDA officials are worried they might be indirectly supporting terrorism.
Mr. Khadr is a key figure in the Canadian al-Qaeda network. He uses the alias al-Kanadi, or the Canadian, and is designated by the United Nations as a high-ranking al-Qaeda member. He has not been seen since the Sept. 11 attacks but two of his Canadian sons, Omar and Abdul, were captured in Afghanistan, where they were fighting with al-Qaeda.
Mr. Khadr's name appears in a 101-page statement filed by U.S. prosecutors in the case of Enaam Arnaout, the head of Benevolence International, an Illinois-based charity that authorities claim served as a fundraising front for Osama bin Laden.
The document describes a dispute that broke out in 1988 between Abu Hassan al Madani, one of Osama bin Laden's chief financiers, and Mr. Khadr, the director of Human Concern International, over a project involving Benevolence.
Mr. al Madani had accused Mr. Khadr "of having suspicious contacts with non-Islamic agencies," it said. "The dispute was submitted to secret arbitration before Dr. Fadhl -- a leading Islamic scholar for the Al Jihad organization headed by Ayman Al Zawahiri -- and Abu Hajer al Iraqi, both of whom served on the fatwah committee of al-Qaeda."
The outcome of the tussle is not explained but the description shows that Mr. Khadr had contact with senior al-Qaeda members at a time his activities were being subsidized by the Canadian government. CIDA gave $325,000 to Human Concern between 1980 and 1997.
Canadian intelligence agents claim that in 1995 he funnelled money through Human Concern to finance a bombing in Pakistan that was orchestrated by Al Zawahiri, bin Laden's second-in-command. Seventeen died. Only after the blast did CIDA cut off its grants to Human Concern.
The U.S. Justice Department filed the evidence on Jan. 6, but it was sealed by Judge Suzanne Conlon after defence lawyers argued it was prejudicial to Mr. Arnaout, who goes to trial on Feb. 10 on charges he provided aid to terrorists.
The U.S. document is the first to make a link between Mr. Khadr and Benevolence International, which opened an office in Ontario in 1992 to raise money from Canadian Muslims through mosques and student groups.
While the Syrian-born Mr. Arnaout, 40, claimed to be running a humanitarian aid organization, U.S. authorities say Benevolence was actually funding Islamic-inspired terror campaigns in such places as Chechnya and Afghanistan.
U.S. authorities raided the charity in December, 2001. The newly unsealed document describes a telephone conversation five months later between Solange Waithe, director of the Canadian branch of Benevolence International, and Mr. Arnaout concerning an investigating by Pakistani intelligence.
1981 to 1983 : (SUDAN-BORN M M SALIM aka ABU HAJER AL-IRAQI IS AN IRAQI ARMY COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER— See IRAQ, SUDAN, BIF, WMD, IRAQ/ALQAEDA) “Salim was born to Iraqi parents in Sudan. [Gunaratna, “Inside Al Qaeda”, says he was born in Iraq.] He later studied electrical engineering in Baghdad and was an Iraqi army communications officer from 1981 to 1983. (p.94) - from “Through Our Enemies’ Eyes”, by “Anonymous”, a retired intelligence officer- from “Through Our Enemies’ Eyes”, by “Anonymous”, a retired intelligence officer...via apokatastasis | 05/04/2004 8:33:12 AM PDT
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