Radical cleric pleads not guilty to terrorism charges in Jordan

Radical cleric pleads not guilty to terrorism charges in Jordan

PanARMENIAN.Net - Radical cleric Abu Qatada has pleaded not guilty to terrorism charges in a court in Jordan, BBC News reported.

He is accused of involvement in a series of bombings in 1998 and a terrorist plot that was foiled in 2000. Palestinian-Jordanian Abu Qatada - real name Omar Othman - was previously convicted of the offences in his absence and sentenced to life imprisonment but is now being re-tried.

His eight-year legal battle to stay in the UK ended in July.

"You know full well I am not guilty and that this accusation is false," Abu Qatada told a brief hearing in Amman.

The judge adjourned the case until Dec 24.

At the start of proceedings, Abu Qatada objected to the presence of a military judge at the hearing. He said it violated an agreement with the UK, which led to his extradition, ensuring he had a fair trial.

Attempts to deport him from the UK began in 2005 but were repeatedly prevented by judges concerned about his human rights. He eventually gave up his legal challenges and was flown to Jordan in July.

Speaking about his departure, British Home Secretary Theresa May said the UK government had been "vindicated" after its long fight to deport him.

Since arriving in Jordan, Abu Qatada has been held in a high-security prison in a remote desert area. He could face 15 years in prison if convicted.

Related links:
 Top stories
“The brutal secret police of authoritarian states have been empowered with sweeping surveillance capabilities,” Edin Omanovic said.
The exclusion orders would last for up to two years at a time and could be renewed. Breaches could lead to prison.
Correspondents from Zaman and Cihan were stopped in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs building by ministry personnel.
“I don’t believe there is a military solution. But that is not the only tool available to us,” he said at the Lord Mayor’s banquet.
Partner news
Soghomon Tehlirian assassinated Talaat Pasha on March 15, 1921

Operation Nemesis was a covert operation by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation carried out from 1920 to 1922, during which a number of former Ottoman political and military figures were assassinated for their role in the Armenian Genocide.