Radical cleric 'in Kenyan jail'

A radical Muslim cleric who led a British mosque attended by convicted terrorists has been flown back to Kenya after an attempt to deport him failed.

Nigerian authorities refused to grant a visa to Jamaican-born Sheik Abdullah el-Faisal and instead sent him back to Kenya yesterday, according to an official.

El-Faisal preached at Brixton mosque in south London in the 1990s before being ejected by mosque authorities because of his support for violent jihad.

The mosque was attended at different times by shoe bomber Richard Reid, who is serving a life sentence in a US prison after a failed 2001 attempt to blow up an plane, and convicted September 11 plotter Zacarias Moussaoui.

Al-Amin Kimathi, head co-ordinator for the Muslim Human Rights Forum, said el-Faisal was now being held in a Nairobi prison. He said el-Faisal had been invited to Kenya by Muslim youths to give lectures.

Kenya deported el-Faisal on Thursday after immigration minister Otieno Kajwang said the cleric posed a serious threat to the country's security.

Mr Kajwang said the cleric had chosen Gambia as a destination and Gambia accepted, after attempts to fly him to Jamaica failed.

Britain, South Africa, Tanzania and the US have refused to grant el-Faisal a transit visa that would allow him to connect to flights to Jamaica, which has said it would accept him but would keep a close eye on him.

El-Faisal was jailed for four years in Britain for inciting murder and racial hatred by urging followers to kill Americans, Hindus and Jews. Britain deported him to Jamaica in 2007.

El-Faisal arrived in Kenya on December 24, but immigration officials at a border point did not know who he was because a database that has the watch list was shut down while new software was being installed. Kenyan authorities realised he was in the country after a week.