Jihadi John traveled to Syria ‘despite being detained in Europe and watched by MI5’

An Isil tribute to Mohammed Emwazi, who fronted its notorious beheading videos, gives new details of how he took his “path to jihad”.

The tribute, published in Isil’s online magazine Dabiq, says he was radicalised shortly after the 7/7 attacks on the London transport system in 2005, earlier than had previously been thought. This seems to disavow claims made by the prisoner group Cage among others at the time Emwazi was identified as the masked man in the videos that MI5 harassment contributed to his disillusionment with life in Britain.

He came into contact with MI5 after being stopped from travelling to Kuwait, where his family came from. He was also in contact with two friends with whom he tried to travel to Somalia – they eventually made it and were killed in drone strikes there.

…the tribute says. . . that he would deliberately present himself as “unintelligent” to confuse his questioners, and that he subsequently managed to escape “the much overrated MI5” despite being warned it was watching him.

“Jihadi John” was identified as Mohammed Emwazi, who moved to London with his family as a small boy, a year ago. He was killed in a targeted drone strike while getting into a car in the Isil capital Raqqa on November 11.

The tribute in Dabiq was the first official confirmation by Isil of his death.

It also revealed for the first time that he was injured – not fighting the regime, but against other, non-Isil rebel groups

The article praises the actions for which he became notorious – as well as a previously unexplored side to his nature, his kindliness to children and his friends.

“His harshness towards the kuffar (disbelievers) was manifested through deeds that enraged all the nations, religions, and factions of kufr, the entire world bearing witness to this,” the piece says.

“A side of Ab? Muh?rib that wasn’t witnessed except by those who knew him was his mercy, kindness, and generosity towards the believers, his protective jealousy for Islam and its people, and his affection towards the orphans.

“Of the deeds that attest to his kindness and generosity is that after receiving a sabiyyah (concubine) as a gift he did not hesitate to give her away – likewise as a gift – to an unmarried injured brother.”

The magazine carries a variety of other features, including a long essay on advice to widows of Isil martyrs, laying down rules for their behaviour. They are to stay in mourning for four months and ten days, not accept offers of marriage, and although they may gather together, they may not engage in “gossip and backbiting” while they do so and they must return to the marital home by nightfall.


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