Mohamad Al-Khaled Samha

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Abu Bashar (born Mohamad Al-Khaled Samha in 1958)[1] is a Syrian-born imam of the mosque of The Islamic Society in Denmark in Odense, Denmark.[2][3] He was involved in protests against the Jyllands-Posten cartoons of Muhammad and in the Vollsmose terrorist arrests.[1]

Al-Khaled worked together with Christian priests to put up a display on religions in the municipality building,[4] and participated in a groundbreaking conference between Christian and Muslim leaders in Denmark.[5]

Al-Khaled was one of the imams who travelled to the Middle East with the Akkari-Laban dossier during the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy. He was part of the first delegation of imams that went to Egypt 3–11 December 2005.[6][7][8]

Al-Khaled worked as prison imam at the State Prison in Nyborg until he was fired in July 2006.[9] According to sources at the prison, he was fired after complaints from inmates at Nyborg State Prison that he was inciting hatred of Denmark.[10][11] Answering to the story in the Folketing, Justice Minister Lene Espersen said he was fired due to cutbacks at the prison.[12]

Al-Khaled knew the Vollsmose terrorists, who lived in his area, though he mentioned in interviews he knew them only as neighbors[13][14] After their arrest, he confirmed for news reporters that the suspects were Muslims.

According to the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet, Youssef Mohamad El Hajdib, one of the suspects arrested for the 2006 German train bombing, had Al-Khaled's phone number saved on his phone.[15] That information gained in importance, when it emerged, that El Hadib was arrested on his way by train to Odense, the city al-Khaled lives in.[16] Al-Khaled denied knowing El Hajdib, and was never charged or asked about this matter by the Danish or the German police, and it was never confirmed that El Hajdib had his number.

In September 2014, Al-Khaled gave a lecture at an Islamic Society in Denmark-run mosque and said "[Jews are the] offspring of apes and pigs".[17][18] He was indicted in November 2016, facing two years in prison if convicted.[19]


  1. ^ a b Rasmussen, Morten (7 September 2006). "Odense-imam er midtpunkt i terrorsag" [Odense imam is the center of terrorism case]. Kristeligt Dagblad (in Danish). Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  2. ^ Karen Jespersen; Ralf Pittelkow (16 August 2012). The Power of Islam. JP/Politikens Forlag. pp. 97–. ISBN 978-87-400-0612-4.
  3. ^ Lene Kühle (2006). Moskeer i Danmark: islam og muslimske bedesteder (in Danish). Forlaget Univers. pp. 59–. ISBN 978-87-91668-05-0. Den er grundlagt i 1993 i mindre lokaler i centrum af Odense, men man købte i 1997 for 3,5 mio. kr. en stor ejendom på ... Formanden for Islamisk Forbund for Jylland og Fyn, Mohamad Al-Khaled Samha (Abu Bashar), er ligeledes knyttet til ...
  4. ^ "Vi må samarbejde, hvis vi skal redde de unge i Vollsmose" [We must work together if we want to save the youth in Vollsmose] (in Danish). Ugeavisen Odense. 17 January 2001. Archived from the original on 24 July 2002.
  5. ^ Historisk møde mellem kristne og muslimske ledere på Nyborg Strand (in Danish) Archived 2007-02-21 at
  6. ^ Bernhard Debatin (2007). Cartoon debate and the freedom of the press. LIT Verlag Münster. pp. 227–. ISBN 978-3-8258-9950-9. 3–11 December 2005 The first delegation of five Danish Imams, headed by Abu Bashar, visits Egypt to meet with ...
  7. ^ Lisbet Christoffersen; Margit Warburg (8 April 2016). Religion in the 21st Century: Challenges and Transformations. Routledge. pp. 334–. ISBN 978-1-317-06750-4. Another outstanding member was Abu Bashar, who was connected to a mosque in Odense, where one of the imams is a pupil of Abu Laban (Dørge 2006). Abu Laban himself did not go to Egypt. He had close associations internationally with ...
  8. ^ Ahmed Akkari; Martin Kjær Jensen (7 April 2014). Min afsked med islamismen: Muhammedkrisen, dobbeltspillet og kampen mod Danmark (in Danish). ArtPeople. pp. 274–. ISBN 978-87-7137-804-7. Som dynamoer og initiativtagere til hele kampagnen var Raed,Abu Laban, jeg selv og Abu Bashar fra Odense selvskrevne deltagere. Vi indkaldte til et møde for at finde yderligere to repræsentanter, og pludselig meldte nogle af vores ...
  9. ^ Jeffry V. Mallow (18 September 2014). Zionist Diarist and Other Polemics. iUniverse. pp. 271–. ISBN 978-1-4917-4562-5. It was the leadership of the nonintegrated Muslim community, including Imam Abu Bashar, a chaplain at Nyborg State Prison, that helped spread the calumny that the cartoons showed ...
  10. ^ Raphael Israeli (2008). The spread of Islamikaze terrorism in Europe: the third Islamic invasion. Vallentine Mitchell. ISBN 978-0-85303-733-0. Finally, the Danes learned that Abu Bashar, a Syrian cleric living in the regional capital of Odense and working as a prison chaplain, was fired after complaints from inmates at Nyborg State Prison that he was inciting hatred of Denmark, and ...
  11. ^ "Fængselsimam fyret". (in Danish). 12 October 2006. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  12. ^ "Folketinget - S 303 - 2006-07: Om årsagen til fyringen af fængselsimam Abu Bashar". Folketinget (in Danish). Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  13. ^ " - 2 of 5 terror suspects jailed in Denmark". Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  14. ^ "Imam Abu Bashar: De bliver løsladt" (in Danish). Politiken. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  15. ^ "9 arrested by Denmark in reported terror plot - Europe - International Herald Tribune". NYT. 5 September 2006. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  16. ^ Dean T. Olson (2009). Perfect Enemy: The Law Enforcement Manual of Islamist Terrorism. Charles C. Thomas. ISBN 978-0-398-07886-7. Twenty-two former Danish ambassadors criticized the Prime Minister of Denmark for not meeting with the eleven ... Suspect Youssef el- Hajdib was arrested enroute to Denmark and police found the phone number of Abu Bashar, the leader of ...
  17. ^ "Danish imam calls Jews 'apes and pigs' in video". The Local. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
  18. ^ "Fynsk imam: Jøder stammer fra aber og grise". (in Danish). Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  19. ^ "Imam tiltalt for at kalde jøder for børn af aber og svin". (in Danish). Retrieved 5 December 2016.