UK & World News
Cardiff Mosque Denies Radicalising ISIS Fighters
A mosque in Cardiff attended by two British members of an Islamic extremist group has denied promoting extremist ideologies as Home Secretary Theresa May says 400 UK-linked citizens are fighting in Syria.
The Al-Manar Centre confirmed that the two men who appeared alongside a third British man in a recruitment video for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) had attended the mosque.
But it said it had never encouraged any of its members to join extremist groups fighting abroad.
In a statement, the Al-Manar Centre said: "It is worth mentioning that ACT's stance is well known, that we are opposed to going to Syria or any other country, to participate in an armed struggle and have always made this clear.
"We have on many occasions tackled the issues of extreme ideologies. Indeed, feeling the responsibilities towards our local community, especially those concerning the youth, we have engaged with parents warning against such dangers.
"We would like to emphasise that the vast majority of the local Muslim community are law abiding British citizens.
"May we reiterate our concerns that the internet has become an alarming source for radicalisation of such vulnerable members of our British society."
In the video posted to YouTube, students Nasser Muthana and Reyaad Khan, both aged 20 and from Cardiff, and Abdul Raqib Amin, who was brought up in Aberdeen, urged Westerners to join the fighting in Iraq and Syria.
Nasser Muthana's father Ahmed told Sky News last week that he believed his son was radicalised in a mosque in the United Kingdom, but did now know which one.
Muthana's brother Aseel is also known to be fighting with ISIS.
Home Secretary Theresa May has said the latest figures suggest the number of UK-linked individuals who have gone to fight in Syria currently stands at about 400.
She told Sky News that to prevent them returning home and posing a threat to UK citizens, "we need to exercise every tool that we have."
She said that included that capability to monitor the communications of those who are suspected of taking part in extremist activity who "pose a very real threat."
Meanwhile, the Archbishop of York has called on religious leaders to make sure young people are not "brainwashed" into fighting and killing in the name of their faith.
Dr John Sentamu told Sky News they had "a duty to work together" to tackle the problem of UK youths being radicalised and recruited as jihadists.
Dr Sentamu said: "I don't want to use the word radicalising. I think it is brainwashing. We don't want our young people to be brainwashed believing really a lie, that by fighting and killing another person your religion becomes better.
"All religious leaders, whatever tradition they come from, have got a duty to work together to make sure that our young people are not being brainwashed into some kind of nonsense."