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'UK terror suspects travelled to Pak for training'

January 26, 2013 23:04 IST

Two terror suspects, who allegedly plotted suicide bombings in Britain, have been accused of travelling to Pakistan for terrorist training, making suicide videos and buying chemicals to make home-made bombs.

Al Qaeda suspects Irfan Naseer and Irfan Khalid from Birmingham were under surveillance by MI5 for weeks before their arrest in September 2011 and were heard  discussing their plans in bugged conversations, a jury was told during their ongoing trial at Woolwich Crown Court yesterday.

It was only after their arrest that Ashik Ali, a co-defendant accused of being part of their plans, told police that they planned to kill soldiers.

"This was, as Khalid put it, 'revenge for everything' and 'another 9/11' that would be celebrated on its anniversary day," said prosecutor Brian Altman. "If Ali was telling the truth in interview then the plan was for him and the others to don suicide vests or jackets and rucksack bombs and to carry and use guns to kill British soldiers in April or May 2012," he added.

Ali told police he had noticed a change in the other two men when they returned from Pakistan in July 2011 but still did not believe they would go through with their plan, according to The Daily Telegraph.

Naseer and Khalid have told the jury they were only boasting to Ali in order to scare off gangsters who were threatening them. Altman said their defences were ‘contradictory, contrived, perverse and deliberately dishonest’. Jonathan Whitfeld, arguing for Naseer, said his client was an ‘overweight, lazy mummy's boy’ obsessed with ‘food and farting’ who would have been a ‘rubbish terrorist’.

Naseer, 31, Khalid 27, and Ali, 27, all unemployed, deny charges of terrorist fundraising, recruiting others and planning a terrorist bombing campaign.

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