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    Belgium's Court Strips Former Terrorist Recruiter of Citizenship - Reports

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    Belkasem used to serve as the head of the public organization Shariat for Belgium, which actively propagated Wahhabism among the European country's Muslim population and enlisted militants to be sent to fight in Syria.

    A Belgian court in Antwerp has ruled to strip Moroccan-born Fouad Belkacem of his Belgian citizenship; he had earlier been sentenced to 12 years for crimes associated with terrorism, VRT broadcaster reported. 

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    "The court has ruled that Belkacem be stripped of his Belgian citizenship," the broadcaster reported. 

    His lawyer Liliane Verjauw has been cited as saying that she may appeal against the court's ruling, and, perhaps, appeal to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg if such a necessity emerges. She explained that if Belkacem loses Belgian citizenship, he may be deported to Morocco to serve out his prison sentence there, where the conditions of life among prisoners are significantly more rigid. 

    In 2010-2014, Belkasem had served as head of the public organization Sharia4Belguim, which actively propagated Wahhabism in the migrant community, and following the launch of military activities in Syria started to enlist militias for terrorist groups in the Middle Eastern state.

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    Tags:
    citizenship, deportaion, terrorism, European Court of Human Rights, Antwerp, Belgium
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