Stockholm: Al-Shabab recruited at youth center
Update: Via Gudmundson's blog: Preacher Anas Khalifa also preached at the Kreativitetshuset youth center. Khalifa uploaded to his blog his lectures "Back to Allah" and "The disease and the cure", which he gave to 80-100 listeners at the youth center.
Khalifa is a radical imam from Gothenburg who's known for saying Muslims should not mix with Jews and other infidels, preaching to children about the special privileges of martyrs in paradise, and for associating with Jihadists. He most recently achieved world-fame for a sermon of his that appeared in an al-Arabiya show on Islam in Sweden in which he urged his listeners to stop Jews from humiliating the Muslims (via MEMRI)
Several of the young men recruited from Sweden by the Islamist rebel group al-Shabaab to fight in Somalia were recruited from a youth center in Rinkeby in north-west Stockholm.
A dozen people that Ekot (SR) spoke to said that the recruiting was led by a youth leader at the center. One of the youth who visited the center said that he could have slipped as well.
A: He was about to influence me
Q: How's that?
A: He was about to drag me into this.
Q: In what way was he about to?
A: Those who were killed, I could have been one of them.
What the teenager says fits well with the testimony of a dozen other young men about the man who lead in Rinkeby the recruiting for the Somali Islamist rebels al-Shabaab, who fight against the government in Somalia.
According to Swedish security service Säpo, al-Shabaab recruited about 20 youth in Sweden. Some of them were killed in battle.
The man identified as the head recruiter in Rinkeby is in his 30s. He worked for a non-profit youth center, Kreativitetshuset, which was started by the mosque in the center.
There the youth leader showed clips from YouTube about sacrificing oneself for the faith.
"I've seen how they show pictures of war victims, severed heads and various atrocities and repeat the same message the whole time. It's very powerful for those who aren't strong enough to resist."
A year ago the youth leader disappeared from Rinkeby. We've made repeated attempts to get hold of the former center leader. According to our sources he's in Somalia and has a senior position in al-Shabab.
The youth center in Rinkeby in north-west Stockholm received 480,000 Swedish kroner over four years as subsidy from the municipal sports department.
But when the municipality realized that girls and boys were being segregated, they cut off the subsidy. In the spring of 2008 the youth center was shut down.
but according to Säpo the recruiting continues in Sweden's major cities. A few of those who were recruited at the youth center ended up badly, or as the youth leader predicted.
"He said that we would go to heaven. A one-way ticket to paradise."
Source: SR (Swedish), h/t Gudmundson