London Charity Accused of Funding Terrorism

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LONDON -- A British charity is being accused of helping to fund a militant Islamic group in Nigeria.

Boko Haram, which is said to be tied to al Qaeda, has targeted churches and Christians as it seeks to spread terror across the country.

Now, recent reports claim money raised by the London-based Al Muntada trust fund found its way to Boko Haram, causing concern throughout the United Kingdom.

Lord Alton of Liverpool called on Parliament to investigate the alleged connection after raising the matter with the British Foreign Office.

"They then decided to report the matter to the Metropolitan Police and also to the Charity Commission to investigate those allegations," he said.

Lord Alton said the fact that Boko Haram is responsible for hundreds of murders this year makes it an issue of international concern.

"They have been laying explosives at the gates and inside churches. They have been targeting pastors and priests," Alton explained. "So churches Protestant and Catholic have been decimated, and many innocent lives have been taken."

The charity Al Muntada raises money for disaster projects in Africa.

"Al Muntada El Islami Trust, as an established registered charity, over the last 25 years, we have worked in some of the poorest regions of Africa providing eye clinics, maternal mortality projects and digging wells all across the continent," charity official Naveed Ashraf said 

"We denounce and reject violence and extremism in all its forms and totally reject the baseless accusations that have been made against us," he added.

Al Muntada is consulting its lawyers to determine if it should take legal action against those making the allegations.

Nigerian Pastor Ado Omooba is co-founder of the Christian Concern group in London. He wants to ensure concerns about the charity aren't brushed aside.

Omooba said whatever comes to light on the matter, he hopes it will highlight the plight of persecuted Christians in his homeland.

"The amount of influence that the international community such as the British government has is huge," he said.

Lord Alton also called for all Christians around the world to pray and act to prevent any resources from going to Boko Haram.

"Christians should contact their members of Parliament, members of Congress, members of national legislatures and ask what is being done by their national government to list Boko Haram as a proscribed terrorist organization," he said. "And to ensure that no material support goes to that organization to carry on this violence that's being waged."

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Peter Wooding

Peter Wooding

CBN News United Kingdom Correspondent

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