Establishing the Islamic Caliphate everywhere in the world through covert investments has been the Muslim Brotherhood’s strategy for decades. A new book reveals the funding sources, mostly from Qatar, and the public institutions spreading radical Islam.
A prayer centre in Sheffield, a student apartment block in Leeds, a school in Lyon – it may not look like a strategy, but the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated the everyday lives of Europeans, and in particular the young and impressionable.
The new book by French investigative journalists Christian Chesnot and Georges Malbrunot, entitled Qatar papers: how the emirate finances the Islam of France and Europe, catalogues countless projects in France and across the rest of Europe that are run by the Muslim Brotherhood and financed by Qatar Charity.
Qatar’s emir supposedly humanitarian NGO has repeatedly been shown to support terrorist organisations, such as Hamas in Palestine and the terror cells across Africa, and supports the Muslim Brotherhood around the world. Although the Brotherhood is currently not designated a terrorist organisation in the UK, a 2014 report into the organisation found that “the Muslim Brotherhood at all levels have repeatedly defended Hamas attacks against Israel, including the use of suicide bombers and the killing of civilians… Some leading Muslim Brotherhood members and supporters have endorsed attacks on western forces.”
One of the most senior Brothers, Youssef Nada, who was in the wake of the 9/11 attacks accused by the US of terrorism funding, kept a manifesto called The Project in his Swiss home. It was discovered by Swiss federal police and sets out the ambition for establishing “the Kingdom of God everywhere in the world”.
At the time, Nada lived in Lugano where he co-founded financial institution al-Taqwa. The bank was used by numerous Muslim Brothers as well as family members of Osama Bin Laden.
The Project called for “studying local and global centres of power, and the possibilities of placing them under influence”, “contacting any new movement engaged in jihad anywhere on the planet”, “creating jihad cells in Palestine” and “fostering a sense of resentment towards Jews”. All this with the aim of “coordinating Islamic work in one direction only to consecrate the power of God on earth”.
When asked by investigators whether he supported these views, Nada claimed he only agreed with up to 20% of the text, and somehow didn’t know why he kept the manifesto in his home.
Yet, it has become the blueprint for the strategy of the Brotherhood and Qatar Charity. Chesnot and Malbrunot’s book lists countless projects, such as schools, mosques and associations.
In particular, the Al Kindi school in Lyon has come under the spotlight: it is close the Swedish group The Commission for the Protection of Civilians, which has procured weapons for al-Qaeda in Syria. The private Muslim school was opened in 2007 in the Décines-Charmieu district near Lyon.
A former deputy head teacher of Al Kindi took a sabbatical after being elected by the Ennhada party in Tunisia. Influential visitors at the school are Hani Ramadam, the director of the Islamic Centre of Geneva, whose brother Tariq has repeatedly been investigated for raping vulnerable persons, and Nabil Ennasri, the founder of the Qatar Observatory.
Al Kindi, in 2014, organised a race in solidarity with Gaza together with NGO CBSP (the Committee for Charity and Support for the Palestinians), which has financial ties to Hamas and is listed as a terrorist entity by the US Treasury. According to Qatar Papers, Al Kindi received €133,000 in May 2008 from the Muslim Association of Alsace (AMAL), with money paid to AMAL by Qatar Charity.
The charity funds by proxy numerous projects across Europe. One of its largest has been the Emaan mega-mosque and religious education facility in Sheffield. The Emaan Trust, which developed the centre, has been funded by Nectar Trust, previously named Qatar Charity UK. The mosque’s board of trustees includes several Muslim Brothers, including Ahmed Al-Rawi, the notorious Muslim community leader, former president of the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe and the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB); and Belgacem Kahlalech, the former secretary of the MAB and former president of the Algerian League in Britain.
Al Emaan is also linked to the controversial Samara Plaza in Leeds, a student housing block in which 16 of its 78 flats provide income streams for the Brotherhood. Ahmed Al-Rawi is also a shareholder of property development firm Leedsgate Ltd, which owns the Samara Plaza properties.
Through its vast wealth, the Qatari leaders have infiltrated public life across Europe, despite its known links to the Muslim Brotherhood and terrorism funding. Yet, political leaders are reluctant to act for fear of being called islamophobic.