With Leedsgate Ltd, the Muslim Brotherhood’s real estate empire grows

One of the Muslim Brotherhood’s most senior leaders in Europe, Ahmed Al-Rawi, has joined a new real estate company named Leedsgate Ltd as a shareholder, expanding the Muslim Brotherhood’s real estate empire across the continent.

The Muslim Brotherhood is a notorious transnational radical Islamist social, religious and political organisation which has been linked to terrorist activities and is currently listed as a terrorist organisation by Israel, Russia, Canada and various Arab countries. For the last two decades, the Muslim Brotherhood has been moving into the real estate business in Europe to acquire hard currency.

One of the forerunners of this strategy, Ahmed Al-Rawi, is a highly controversial Iraqi-British Muslim community leader primarily known as the former president of the Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE), the umbrella organisation of all the national Muslim Brotherhood groups of Europe.

Al-Rawi comes from a family notorious for its links with Islamic extremism – his brother Khadem Al-Rawi was the director of the European Institute for Human Sciences (EIHS), a Muslim Brotherhood training facility with branches in France and in the UK, which specialises in the Arabic language, Islamic studies and the training of imams.

Michael Adebowale, one of the terrorists who in 2013 murdered British army soldier Lee Rigby in London, was a student at the Welsh branch from 2011 to 2012. Students at an EIHS branch in Burgundy, France, were “found to have links to al-Qaeda and other terrorist organisations”. Even more astounding, Khadem Al-Rawi himself was an acquaintance of Magdi al-Nashar, a chemist arrested on suspicion of involvement in the 2005 London terrorist bombings.

Al-Rawi’s other brother, Isam Al-Rawi, who remained in Iraq, was a member of the Shura Council of the Association of Muslim Scholars, the Association’s governing body, characterised by one source as an Iraqi offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood that strongly supported armed attacks on the US-led coalition. Isam was also linked to the Sadr Movement, an Iraqi political movement which is closely tied to the Mahdi Army, an armed group which fought against coalition forces in the early stages of the Iraq War. He died in Baghdad in 2006.

Al-Rawi himself is a known Muslim Brotherhood top leader and was previously a trustee of the Union of Good, a network of radical entities financially supporting Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist organisation. The Union of Good in turn is led by the influential Qatar-based Islamic theologian Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who is believed to be the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, as well as of Hamas.

At the height of the Iraq War in 2004, Al-Rawi signed a declaration supporting uprisings against the “filth of occupation” in Iraq and Palestine, and compared the coalition forces in Iraq with the Nazi invaders of France in 1940, adding that he would not condemn attacks on coalition forces.

Al-Rawi is currently a director of the Emaan Trust of Sheffield, an Islamic organisation building a huge £5 million mosque and Islamic centre in Sheffield, funded by Qatar.
The organisation’s person with significant control was until recently Aiman Mohammed Ebrahim Saeed, a Yemeni convicted shopkeeper who was caught selling stolen mobile phones.

Al-Rawi was also previously the chairman of the Europe Trust, FIOE’s fundraising arm.
The Europe Trust owns investment properties (including student apartments) worth millions of dollars in Europe, which it acquired with the help of one of Al-Rawi’s friends, Ahmed Albazie, a property developer.

Albazie has notably developed the Samara Plaza student residential complex in Leeds.
Records from a company registered in the Channel Islands reveal that Samara’s shareholders included Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated investors, as well as a British Virgin Islands company and a number of Iraq-born British citizens including several relatives of Al-Rawi.

Another shareholder was Osama al-Tikriti, former head of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party in Iraq. His son is Anas al-Tikriti, chairman of the Muslim Association of Britain and head of the Cordoba Foundation, described by former Prime Minister of the UK David Cameron as “a front for the Muslim Brotherhood”.

Al-Rawi has once again partnered up with Albazie, with both acting as shareholders of Leedsgate Ltd, a British real estate company set up in July 2018. Listing its nature of business as the “buying and selling of own real estate”, this company appears to be the newest unit in an intricate web of corporate entities funding Islamic extremism in Europe.

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