A grotesque cleric who authorised the enslavement and mass rape of Yazidi girls by Islamic State jihadis claims he received funding from a terror financier in Britain.
Shifa Al-Nima, who was dubbed ‘Jabba the Jihadi’ on social media after photographs were released of the 40-stone imam being arrested in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul this month, has told investigators that he received £4,500 from a man using the nom de guerre Abu Mustapha Al-Najmawi.
The Supreme Judicial Council of Iraq last week said Al-Nima had confessed to meeting Al-Najmawi during a pilgrimage to the Saudi Arabian city of Mecca, where he was handed the cash.
Shifa Al-Nima, who weighs 40 stone, was captured two weeks ago by an Iraqi SWAT team. In hiding since July 2017, the obese cleric was too fat to stand and had to be carried to the back of a pick-up truck
‘I travelled to Mecca to perform umrah [pilgrimage] and I met with the terrorist Abu Mustapha Al-Najmawi,’ it quoted the cleric as saying.
‘He is a Mosul native who resided in London. We discussed religious topics and I explained to him the situation in Mosul and the details about the Iraqi forces and their affiliation with the Americans.
‘We talked about the role of jihadi factions and he gave me $6,000 [£4,500] and asked that I spend it on armed groups.’
British security sources last night said they were unaware of a suspected terrorist called Abu Mustapha Al-Najmawi operating in the UK, but were now investigating.
The arrest of Al-Nima – who issued fatwas that provided warped justification for raiding Yazidi villages in the Sinjar mountains of north-west Iraq and forcing women and girls to become sex slaves – is the biggest coup against IS since the death of the group’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in October.
Al-Nima, who also issued fatwas urging IS fighters to expel Christians and to destroy ancient monuments across Iraq, was captured two weeks ago by an Iraqi SWAT team. In hiding since July 2017, the obese cleric was too fat to stand and had to be carried to the back of a pick-up truck.
Shifa Al-Nima was dubbed ‘Jabba the Jihadi’ on social media after photographs were released of the 40-stone imam being arrested in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul this month
According to the Supreme Judicial Council, Al-Nima admitted: ‘I also issued the fatwa to expel Christians from Mosul and I permitted killing of Shi’ites and issued other fatwas in regard to allowing IS fighters to enslave Yazidi women and sell them and killing the Yazidi men.
‘I also issued fatwas to confiscate houses of displaced people and permitted IS fighters to blow up mosques in Mosul which had graves of prophets and righteous people inside them, such as permitting the destruction of the Mosque of Prophet Yunus [Jonah].’
As well as Al-Nima being likened to Jabba the Hutt, the slug-like alien from the Star Wars films, photographs of his capture led to comparisons with the Fat Bastard sumo wrestler character in the Austin Powers films.
Commentators celebrated the humbling of the once powerful cleric. Muslim activist Majid Nawaz tweeted: ‘IS mufti Shifa Al-Nima is arrested. He was so overweight he had to be taken by police in the back of a pick-up truck. That he is this obese, immobile and humiliated is another blow to IS imbeciles who thought God was with them.’
Former Tory councillor Macer Gifford, who travelled to Syria to fight with Kurdish forces against IS, said: ‘I’m delighted that the Islamic State’s very own Jabba the Hutt has been captured in Mosul. He’s responsible for the execution of men, women and children. This animal raped and murdered.’
Scotland Yard last night declined to comment.