Radical Islamic cleric Mulla Krekar has been ordered held in custody for another two months, on charges that he once again has been making threats. Krekar also claims that he now sees himself as a political prisoner in Norway.
Krekar, a former refugee who was granted asylum and state financial support for many years, has constantly been in trouble for leading a guerrilla group in his native Iraq and violating the terms of his asylum, for issuing statements that have supported terrorist acts and for making threats against various individuals.
He’s been in and out of prison, and last year was banished to an asylum center in a remote village in north-central Norway, pending his deportation. Norwegian authorities have been trying to send him back to Iraq, after more than 20 years in Norway, but only if they can win assurances he won’t be executed there.
Shortly after his release from prison in January, he quickly made new threats in an interview with state broadcaster NRK. He praised the terrorists who massacred staff at the French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo, and said that anyone drawing caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed deserves to die.
He was thus arrested again and prosecutors want to keep him in prison unitl that legal case comes up in court this autumn. On Friday, the Oslo City Court agreed, claiming there was danger of repeat offense if Krekar was released.