I’m a pacifist, says surgeon cleared in Glasgow bombings

December 23rd, 2008 - 5:52 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 23 (IANS) A brain surgeon cleared of plotting terror attacks in London and Glasgow last year says he is a pacifist and was duped by his extremist friends.Neurologist Mohammed Asha, who is likely to face an attempt to deport him to his native Jordan, said: “I want a career as a top neurosurgeon to help save lives and I don’t want people blowing me up at airports waiting to go on holiday.”

He told the Daily Mirror: “I am a pacifist and I condemn all fighting. The idea of picking on women and children and soft targets disgusts me.”

His comments, published Tuesday, were the first since his acquittal Dec 16 and come amid a reported attempt by the British home ministry to deport him to Jordan.

Asha was accused of funding and guiding two terrorists - India-born Kafeel Ahmed, who died from burn wounds suffered during an attack on Glasgow airport in June 2007, and Bilal Abdulla, who has been jailed for 32 years.

Asha, who is still in prison, confirmed he gave Abdulla cash but insisted it was for rent. “I was tricked by a friend. It’s laughable people have called me a supporter and a funder of terrorism,” he said.

Asha, who met Abdulla in Cambridge said: “They were my friends but they have wrecked my life.

“They betrayed my friendship and abused my trust and I was dragged through the courts for associating with them, but my association was based on friendship, not conspiracy.”

Abdulla recruited Ahmed, an engineering student from Bangalore, while they both studied in Cambridge.

The Daily Mail said British Home Office investigators are preparing to launch what looks set to be a protracted legal struggle to deport Asha.

It said investigators are hoping to use evidence not given at Asha’s trial - thought to be from electronic surveillance - to support their case for his deportation.

Asha claims to be penniless and hopes his fight against deportation will be funded by legal aid. He is expected to argue that he could face persecution if forced to return to Jordan.

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