Chennai: A Swedish national has emerged as the main recruiter of Subahani Haja Moideen, the Tamil Nadu resident who was arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for terrorism earlier this month.
Moideen was arrested when he returned home from Mosul in Iraq, where he had been a part of the Islamic State (ISIS).
According to a report in DNA, Moideen, during interrogation, said an ISIS fighter—who goes by the nom de guerre of Abu-Hafz-Al-Swedi—was his main contact person and helped him make the journey from India to Raqqa in Syria.
NIA is likely to contact Swedish authorities to seek information on Swedi, since his name has cropped up for the first time during the crackdown against ISIS sympathisers in India.
Swedi, whose real name is unknown, is the first ISIS recruiter to have actually met an Indian fighting for the terror group.
Moideen was introduced to Swedi in Tell Abyad, Syria, where he was given training in arms as well as lessons on Sharia enforcement. He was then given a two-week combat training session during which he was injured. Moideen was given the job of a security guard, for guarding tents of ISIS militants on a salary of $100 per month. The salary was paid to him by Abu-Hafz-Al-Swedi.
Moideen fled Mosul when the Western and Russian forces bombarded the region. But he claims that after he saw the brutalities perpetrated by ISIS in Mosul, he began asking his superiors to allow him to leave the group. Following this, he he was imprisoned in a jail managed by ISIS.
Moideen managed to escape Mosul and travel to Turkey. In Istanbul, he contacted the Indian consulate and told them that he had lost his passport. He was returned to India via Mumbai on September 22, 2015.
But on returning, he went to Kerala and got in touch with ISIS handlers again, after which he was discovered and arrested.