UK & World News

  • 21 June 2014, 7:01

Brit Jihadi Film Leaves Family 'Heartbroken'

The family of a man who appears in a video showing British jihadists urging Western Muslims to join them in Iraq have spoken of their devastation and heartbreak at him and his younger brother going to fight.

Medical student Nasser Muthana, 20, can be seen in the footage - released on social media - wearing a white turban and using the name Abu Muthanna al Yemeni.

In the film, entitled "There is no life without Jihad", he claims the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), has fighters from as far afield as Cambodia, Australia and the UK.

His family, from the Cardiff area, said that he travelled to join the conflict with younger brother Aseel Muthana, 17.

A spokesman for the Muthana family said: "They are not happy with Nasser going. We didn't know he was going. We wouldn't let him go if we knew.

"My family were more devastated that Aseel went. It is heart-breaking because we don't know if we will see them again.

"Currently we don't know where they are and we don't have contact with them.

"Nasser and Aseel went because they feel guilty about Syria but we were surprised they were talking about those things we saw on YouTube. Both were pious and religious and interested in the faith."

Muthana is one of three apparent Britons to feature in the video, which calls for their countrymen to "answer the call and fight for Allah".

A Home Office spokesman said "online terrorism" which "influences people who are vulnerable to radicalisation" would not be tolerated.

"We already work closely with the internet industry to remove terrorist material hosted in the UK or overseas," the spokesperson said.

Adam Walker, of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association, told Sky News that Muslims in the UK were shocked by the video.

"[The people in the video] are focusing on a really small minority of individuals in the UK who have somehow been influenced by hate preachers, and who feel that somehow Islam promotes that they should go to a foreign country and kill people, which is patently wrong.

"They should respect the values that Britain promotes and that Islam also promotes - of tolerance and respect."

The video emerged as ISIS, who have taken control of large swathes of Iraq, launched a global campaign asking Muslims to post messages "to support the Islamic State" on social media.

ISIS has used it to release videos of its fighters parading around towns they have claimed in northern Iraq.

Last week a series of horrific images of Iraqi soldiers being murdered were posted online.

One of the co-founders of Twitter has told Sky News the platform remains a "force for good" despite being utilised by groups such as ISIS.

Biz Stone told Digital View, which airs on Saturday at 10.30am: "When you create a large-scale platform where hundreds of millions of people have the freedom of expression you have to take the good with the bad.

"I'd rather this sort of thing be out in the open than hidden in the back waters."

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