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Al-Ghurabaa (loosely translated as The Strangers) is one of two UK-based Islamist militant groups banned by the British government on July 17, 2006.

Islamism is a totalitarian ideology adhered to by Muslim extremists (e.g. the Taliban, Hamas and Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda). It is considered to be a distortion of Islam. Many Islamists engage in terrorism in pursuit of their goals. [See Islam and Terrorism]

Al-Ghurabaa has praised the London bombers as martyrs. It has engaged in other hate speech as well, and promotes extremism.

Al-Ghurabaa and the Saved Sect are the first two organisations to be banned under new laws outlawing the glorification of terrorism.

John Reid, the Home Secretary, laid an order in Parliament making it a criminal offence for a person to belong to or encourage support for either group.

It will also be illegal to arrange meetings in their support or to wear clothes or carry articles in public indicating support for either group.

Al-Ghurabaa and the Saved Sect came to wide public notice when they were named as the organisers of the protests outside the Danish Embassy in London in February.

Protesters brandished placards with slogans such as “butcher those who mock Islam”, “massacre those who insult Islam” and “behead the one who insults the prophet”.

In a memorandum issued alongside yesterday’s order, the Home Office said that al-Ghurabaa “courts publicity and makes deliberately provocative and controversial statements expressing extremist views” which fall foul of the anti-glorification legislation.
- Source: UK: Militant Islamist groups banned under terror law, Times Online, UK, July 18, 2006

The banned groups are believed to be offshoots of Al-Mujahiroun, the militant organisation founded by the radical Islamic preacher Omar Bakri Mohammad. Famous for praising the 9/11 hijackers as the "magnificent 19," the latter was banned from the UK in August, 2005.

The protests referred to above were part of the worldwide over-reaction of Muslims against the publication - in a Danish newspaper - of cartoons featuring Islam's prophet Mohammed. Their behavior at this particular event was widely condemned, and goes a long way toward explaining why the groups are now banned:

The Conservatives last night called on the police to arrest militant Muslims who threatened Westerners with violence during protests in London over newspaper cartoons that mocked the Prophet Mohammed.

As fanatics - some dressed as suicide bombers - staged more protests yesterday, David Davis, the shadow home secretary, said the police should take action against what were clearly offences of incitement to murder.

At the height of the protests on Friday demonstrators chanted slogans threatening more London bombings, praising the "magnificent" 9/11 hijackers and waving placards saying "Massacre those who insult Islam", "Europe you will pay" and "Europe you'll come crawling when Mujahideen come roaring".

Mr Davis said last night: "Clearly some of these placards are incitement to violence and, indeed, incitement to murder - an extremely serious offence which the police must deal with and deal with quickly.

"Whatever your views on these cartoons, we have a tradition of freedom of speech in this country which has to be protected. Certainly there can be no tolerance of incitement to murder."
- Source: Muslim protests are incitement to murder, say Tories, Telegraph, UK, Feb. 5, 2006



Believed to be a splinter group of al-Muhajiroun, which was formed in 1996 by Omar Bakri Muhammad with the aim of creating a worldwide Islamic state. Al-Muhajiroun dissolved in 1994. The al-Ghurabaa website is registered at the same address and shares the same contact number as al-Muhajiroun. The internet is al-Ghurabaa’s key medium for mobilisiing support. The organisation courts publicity by making provocative statements expressing extremist views.
- Source: UK: Militant Islamist groups banned under terror law, Times Online, UK, July 18, 2006

News & News Archives

Apologetics Index research resource Al-Ghurabaa news tracker

See Also

Apologetics Index research resource Islam
Apologetics Index research resource Islam and Terrorism
Apologetics Index research resource Islamism
Apologetics Index research resource Q & A about the Terrorism Act 2006 (UK) Posted on the BBC News web site

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This post was last updated: Jul. 18, 2006