UK & World News
Al Shabaab Video Threatens British Muslims
A number of British Muslim figures say they have been offered police protection after a video purportedly released by the al Shabaab militant group threatened them for criticising jihadists.
The video, posted online, was targeted at British Muslims who had spoken out following the murder of drummer Lee Rigby in May.
Political commentator Mohammed Ansar, told Sky News he was one of those named in the video and described feeling "sickened and numb".
"It's very difficult to look at a video like that which is inciting hatred and violence and terror on British streets," he said.
"And you wonder firstly is this a new dimension, attacking British Muslims beyond overseas, beyond British soldiers which has been diabolical.
"And you think about your own safety and the safety of your own family."
Imam and broadcaster Ajmal Masroor wrote on his Facebook page that two police detectives arrived at his home on Wednesday night to warn he was "in imminent danger from the terrorists".
He wrote: "The police officers were visiting me to give me a warning and asking me to be more vigilant.
"As soon as they left my house I started digging further and found an al Shabaab video has been uploaded on the internet and in it they name me as a Muslim who is an enemy of Islam and should be eliminated."
Muslim commentator Mohammed Shafiq tweeted: "I was also visited by the police and told of threats made against me."
Those named in the video have reportedly been visited by police officers who informed them that they had been identified in the hour-long video.
The Metropolitan Police said it was assessing the content of the video. A spokesman confirmed a number of individuals had been spoken to following the release of the video.
In the hour-long video, a man with a British accent wearing a black mask over his face, accuses British Muslims who spoke out after Drummer Rigby's murder as having "mutilated the teachings of Islam".
Al Shabaab was formed to fight for a strict interpretation of Sharia law in Somalia but in recent years has broadened its aims to include international jihad operations.
Sixty-seven people were killed when the group's militants attacked the Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya, on September 21.
Earlier this month, US special forces aborted a mission to capture one of the group's leaders - Mukhtar Abu Zubeyr - in Somalia after they came under heavy attack.
Al Shabaab is fighting to create an Islamic state in Somalia and is banned as a terrorist group by the UK and US.