Grammar schoolboy jihadi exposed by The Tab handed back to ISIS in hostage swap
Shabazz Suleman, who had a place at a top UK university lined up, has been exchanged for Turkish captives
Wycombe teen ISIS defector Shabazz Suleman has been swapped in a hostage deal, involving 46 Turkish citizens and 180 Islamic State fighters.
This follows our unmasking of the 18-year-old last week
What we know about Shabazz
- He went to RGS High Wycombe and was due to start uni this term
- Counter terrorism officers are investigating after his parents reported that he had run away during a family holiday to Turkey
- Shabazz visited Syria last year, where he is believed to have completed aid work for the Free Syrian Army
- He is believed to be one of two British fighters exchanged in the deal
- Newly found social media accounts appear to show his allegiance to the Islamic State and its leader
- He has adopted the Islamic name Abu Shamil al-Muslim
- Shabazz claims to have met Abu-Waheeb, a leader of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant
The deal reportedly involved a swap of 180 Islamic State fighters, in exchange for 46 Turkish citizens -including a number of diplomats- and three local Iraqis, believed to have been seized in the city of Mosul five months ago.
Despite denying his affiliation to militant groups in the region, Shabazz’s parents contacted UK counter-terrorism officers after their son left for Syria during a family holiday in Turkey.
The Tab can now reveal that new evidence has emerged, which appears to show Shabazz – who was on his way to a top university – now fighting for the Islamic State.
In a tweet posted prior to his capture, Suleman appears to have joked about meeting Abu Waheeb- a prominent leader of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.
Posting as @KavkazIslamist, he joked: “When you meet Abu Waheeb and forget how many rakat [prayers] you pray for Fajr [religious festival].”
He also claims to have been in Mosul, Iraq, to hear a speech given by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi – the leader of the so-called Islamic Caliphate.
Posting on his now suspended Twitter account @KavkazIslamist, ‘Baz’-as he is nicknamed by friends- claimed that “Almost all Muslim rulers, when starting a new empire/caliphate, first fought the apostates and then moved onto non-Muslims.”
Posting on another social media site Ask FM, he also argued that the conflict in Syria would end “when the groups unite under the caliphate.”
Many of his posts also show him to be defending ISIS from criticism, and in one post he claimed “ISIS fulfils all sharia conditions for its caliphate- there have been many pledges of loyalty to ISIS.”
Alongside his support for the Islamic State -which has been denounced by Muslims around the world- Shabazz’s suspended Twitter account history shows that he was in regular contact with other ISIS fighters.
In one tweet Shabazz appeared to be discussing an execution with a number of militants.
Following the news of his involvement with the Islamic State, a former school friend spoke to The Tab about his memories with Shabazz at RGS High Wycombe.
“Shabazz was a nice guy, but had some odd ideas,” he said.
“Before leaving to go to Syria, I spoke to him at length about what he thought of the situation over there – and he expressed support for what he called the ‘Islamic Caliphate’.
“I think part of him believed that an Islamic Caliphate would aid Gaza and help realise his own ideas regarding Islam.
“He’s not a bad kid, and I’m really struggling to come to terms with the fact that he’s involved with these people.”
In a press statement released yesterday, RGS Headmaster, Roy Page, said:
“A few weeks ago the school was approached by the relevant authorities regarding Shabazz. We have fully co-operated in the context of the background above and it was those authorities who approached the local press regarding this matter.
“The school does not have any current information on Shabazz. No school should comment on students once they have left the school.
“We would always want all members, past and present, of the school community to be safe and well.”