The Antwerp Correctional Tribunal has judged the group Sharia4Belgium as a terrorist organization. The tribunal thinks the goal of the Islamist group was to fight against democracy so as to replace the Belgian State with an Islamic State, where only Sharia would be law. The Tribunal listed five points to confirm its judgment.
First, the group has its own internet site and Youtube channel. In texts that appeared on them, Sharia4Belgium praised armed jihadists and martyrs.
Second, Fouad Belkacem’s international contacts and first disciples adhered to Salafist jihadism. Belkacem is considered the group’s leader.
The Tribunal also talked about propaganda used on young people. They were indoctrinated to Salafist jihadism through lessons and physical training organized in the Dambruggestraat neighbourhood of Antwerp.
Their fourth point is these young people were recruited for jihad. The tribunal said the defendants cannot deny Sharia4Belgium’s implication in various departures for Syria. It is no coincidence that the group’s leading figures, apart from Fouad Belkacem, went to Syria in August 2012. This is irrefutable proof, the Tribunal thinks, that the trip was organized beforehand. The group met Magli Shura and Jabhat Al-Nusra, two Salafist jihadist movements linked to Al-Qaida.
The conflict in Syria was seen as an opportunity for Sharia4Belgium to establish an Islamic State through armed jihad.
The Tribunal also spoke of the various violent acts the group was responsible for in Belgium, like the fight at the Molenbeek-St-Jean police station after the “niqab incident”.
Maria Novak (Source: Belga)