Attack on Abu Bakr Mosque of Baku

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The Attack on Abu Bakr Mosque of Baku took place on August 17, 2008 when a grenade was thrown through a window of the Abu Bakr (Abu-Bekir) mosque in central Baku, Azerbaijan, during the evening prayer.[1][2] Three people were killed and 13 injured.

Background[edit]

According to the annual Country Report on Terrorism in 2008 of the US Department of State, "Azerbaijan is a logical route for extremists with ties to terrorist organizations".[3]

According to Reuters, the mosque is used both by Sunni and Wahhabi Muslims. And while Azerbaijan has launched several investigations into Wahhabism in the last few months, law enforcement agencies determined that Wahhabists convicted of an attempted terrorist act in the town of Sumgait had links to al-Qaeda.[2] Whilst the activities of Wahabbists in Azerbaijan are considered controversial, the government has declared Wahabbi groups would not be banned.[4]

The U.S. and Israeli embassies in Azerbaijan expressed concern about the incident.

Investigation[edit]

A special committee was created to handle the investigation. The mosque remained closed during the investigation.

The Ministry of National Security of Azerbaijan accused Ilgar Mollachiyev from Zagatala, and Samir Mehdiyev (Suleiman) and a group of others of organizing the attack on Abu Bakr Mosque in Baku. They are reportedly members of an illegal group called Forest Brotherhood. In 2007 17 members of the group were arrested in Sumgayit. As the Ministry reported, "According to their plan, a Sumgayit Jamaat (a secret extremist group) had to be created. They planned a number of robberies in Baku in order to collect funds for a holy war (Jihad)."[5]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ United States condemns attack on the Abu Bakr Mosque in Azerbaijan’s capital, ANS press, 2008
  2. ^ a b Azeri president to oversee mosque blast probe, 18 Aug 2008, Reuters, By Lada Yevgrashina
  3. ^ Azerbaijan is a logical route for extremists with ties to terrorist organizations, Says annual Country Report on Terrorism in 2008 of the US Department of State. ANS Press, 2008
  4. ^ Three dead in attack on mosque in Azerbaijan, TopNews, 2008
  5. ^ MNS Names Organizers of Terrorist Attack On Abu Bakr Mosque, Sept. 2008