London bombers 'told to kill cricketers' - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

London bombers 'told to kill cricketers'

By Greg Buckle 09/10/2006 05:47:25 AM Comments (0)

The London bombers were ordered by al-Qaeda to kill the England and Australian cricket teams with sarin gas during the 2005 Ashes series, according to a friend of one of the terrorists.

News Limited newspapers, quoting the man, said Mohammad Sidique Khan and Shehzad Tanweer allegedly received the orders at a training camp near Kotli, in Pakistan occupied Kashmir, in December 2004.

The claims have been made by a family friend of Hasib Hussain, the bus bomber who killed 13 people. The friend, uses the pseudonym Ahmed Hafiz.

Hafiz, 32, says the bombers were instructed to gain employment as stewards at the Edgbaston cricket ground and spray sarin gas inside the changing rooms.

Australia captain Ricky Ponting, who has arrived with the other 13 members of the Australian squad for the Champions Trophy in India, says he has faith in Australia's security arrangements in India.

The Australians will fly to Mumbai on Tuesday and their first match in the tournament is against a qualifying team on October 18.

Australia's other two Group A matches against England on October 21 and India eight days later are sure to attract massive crowds, heightening the tension over possible security issues.

"We are totally confident in the security precautions Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association take on our behalf," Ponting said in New Delhi.

"Cricket Australia and the ACA have a track record of keeping us informed and acting on security information when and if the situation warrants.

"With regards to this report, we were very comfortable with the security arrangements that were in place during the recent Ashes tour and we continue to trust the security information provided to us by Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association take on our behalf."

The second Test between England and Australia, whose governments have supported Washington in the war on terror, began on August 4, 2005.

Hafiz, whose family have known the Hussains for 25 years, said he had received details of the bombers' visit from members of his extended family, who are involved in running the camp in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

He says 22-year-old Tanweer objected to the plot, possibly because he was a cricketer himself. He was told by a witness that Tanweer argued with Khan (30) and a scuffle between them had to be broken up by a minder.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2024 AAP

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