Footballers linked with TERRORISM, major surprises from EPL
Leading figures in the sports world reacted with shock, grief, anger and sadness to the devastating terror attacks in the French capital which have left almost 130 people dead. Great Britain & Ireland XI and World XI players paused for a minute’s silence at Old Trafford yesterday. But do you know several players in the past have been linked with terrorism including former Premier League players. Some have chosen the terrifying Islamic group ISIS and wanted by FBI for a long time.
Here is the list of footballers who left football’s playboy lifestyle to aid terrorism.
Abu Issa Al-Andalusi
In 2014, the former Arsenal player was accused of joining a band of ruthless jihadi fighters waging war in Syria. Reports say this radicalized player chose a militia man’s life for the terror group turning his back on the playboy lifestyle of a footballer as he was a gun-toting fanatic. Many claims, he has grown up playing and practising with Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo. Last year he was filmed holding an AK47 and allegedly proclaimed holy war in two video clips for an extremist website. Fellow jihadist fighters claim the former footballer, now calls himself Abu Issa Al-Andalusi, was originally brought up in Portugal before signing a contract for Arsenal.
In the terror footage, he appeared in a mask urging all Muslims to come and join the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) – an al-Qaeda off-shoot terrorist group initiating ruthless murders and beheadings. The terror group has been blamed for extreme violence repeatedly against other Islamist factions, Kurds and Syria President Bashar al-Assad’s brutal regime.
A former promising youth of German football who appeared for the under-16 and under-17 national squad was killed on October 11, 2013, after abandoning his football career to fight for terrorist group Al-Qaeda in the Syrian civil war against the brutal Assad regime. He had played alongside famous names of German football like Kevin-Prince Boateng, Sami Khedira and Dennis Aogo. But Karan decided to walk away from football at the age of 20. A video footage of Burak Karan holding a machine gun was uploaded to the internet few days after his tragic death.
Ironically the former France squad member, who revealed that his cousin was killed in the Paris terror attack Friday night, was himself had to formally deny reports last year that he had joined an Islamic warrior group fighting in Syria. The France midfielder, who patrolled the midfield for three premier league sides Arsenal, Chelsea and Portsmouth, claimed he never visited in the war-torn country. In 2009, he joined Real Madrid from Portsmouth and played 87 matches with the Madrid outfit till 2012. Diarra now plays for French League 1 side Marseille.
Mohamed Abu Treika (Aboutrika)
Three times African player of the year recently retired Egyptian soccer star has seen his repeated appeals for the return of his seized assets due to alleged links to a now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, turned down by the Egypt government. However, Mohamed Aboutrika has denied that the famous tourism company he co-owns in Egypt has any connection with the banned Islamist movement – Muslim Brotherhood. The 36-year-old former footballer claimed the company’s co-owner who was reported to be linked with the Islamic organization left the company in 2013.
The short list also includes another former footballer, Nizar Trabelsi, who had played for the German club Fortuna Dusseldorf from 1989 to 1990, was arrested for attempting terror attacks after he joined al-Qaeda. The Tunisian was caught at the right time and thrown jail for 10 years before he could carry out several bombing plots, which includes a suicidal attack on the US Embassy in Paris. Trabelsi was arrested in Belgium in 2003 and now serving his term in a US prison having been extradited on October 2014.
He was found guilty of planning an attack on a NATO air base in Kleine Brogel. US military staffs used to work there which houses nuclear missiles. Trabelsi reportedly met al-Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden in early 2001, later that year al-Qaeda carried out disastrous attacks in the US. The Tunisian footballer was arrested in Brussels just two days after those attacks.
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