Newly-released FBI documents obtained by Clarion Project confirm Clarion’s reports that Jamaat ul-Fuqra is training members in isolated communes across America and Canada.
The group’s “Islamberg” headquarters in upstate New York is its most well-known “Islamic village.”
Fuqra, which now goes by the name of the Muslims of the Americas (MOA) among other titles, is a cultish Islamist group with a history of crime and terrorism. The group is led by Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani in Pakistan.
Gilani’s name appeared in headlines in 2002 when Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was abducted and beheaded on his way to interview Gilani, though the radical cleric was never accused of an involvement in those crimes.
The first FBI document is dated November 27, 2009 and labels the Muslims of the Americas, Inc. as “armed and dangerous.” It begins by summarizing the group’s consistent history of extremism, terrorism and crime:
“Jamaat ul-Fuqra, aka Muslims of the Americas (MOA), have a history of violence and/or violent acts. Use extreme caution when dealing with confirmed members or individuals who are believed to be associated with this group”
The report says that Sheikh Gilani is “thought to be supportive of al-Qaeda,” perhaps referring to the group’s links to al-Qaeda affiliates like Hizbul Mujahideen, to which Fuqra has a history of ties and publicly supports even today.
FBI documents from 2003 that Clarion released in December 2016 mentioned Fuqra’s links to al-Qaeda in Pakistan and use of fronts like security companies in America.
Another newly-released document from December 2010 explicitly refers to “the Muslims of the Americas [aka Fuqra] terrorist organization” and states:
“The MOA [Fuqra] is composed primarily of black American Muslim converts, many who converted to Islam while in prison. Many MOA members reside in rural communities (jamaats) to live and worship free from non-Muslim influence.
The MOA jamaats are located on land that has been privately owned or rented by members. Each jamaat usually has numerous trailers where members reside, a mosque, and a guard post, some with armed guards, at the entrance to the properties. These communities, similar to commune type facilities, have women and children residing in them with the children being homeschooled.
Organized training is also conducted to include weapons training, tactics, hand-to-hand combat, rappelling, and live-fire exercises.”
Fuqra has a documented history of conducting basic paramilitary training in America and elsewhere, including more advanced training in Pakistan and Kashmir.
Gilani appeared in a secret video in the early 1990s offering to use Fuqra offices to provide guerilla training to aspiring jihadists. Clarion Project also released a video from 2001-2002 showing women in military attire getting training at Islamberg.
One of Fuqra’s terrorist-training camps, a 101-acre tract of land in Colorado, was raided in 1992. It was subsequently abandoned by the group, as reported in this recent KRDO news report with Heather Skold. You can see pictures from the investigation into the Colorado Fuqra camp on the Fuqra Files website.
Fuqra fugitives from the training camp were even the subject of an episode of America’s Most Wanted in 1994.
Although these FBI documents from 2009-2011 state that Fuqra has about a dozen “jamaats” in America, the group itself claims to have 22 “Islamic villages” in America alone. The locations for these “Islamic villages” are identified as “Islamberg” in New York, as well as other villages in Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Texas, Michigan, Canada and Trinidad and Tobago.
The group also has operations in Pakistan, Kashmir, Canada, Trinidad, Venezuela and elsewhere (Fuqra has a history of being secretive and deceptive about its locations).
FBI reports from a 2003-2007 investigation in Texas warned, “The MOA [Fuqra] is now an autonomous organization which possesses an infrastructure capable of planning and mounting terrorist campaigns overseas and within the U.S.”
That infrastructure can legally operate because Fuqra is not designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the State Department. The Treasury Department has not sanctioned the group’s overseas leaders and entities, either.
Over a dozen North American Muslim groups have joined Clarion Project in asking the U.S. State Department to look at designating Fuqra as a Foreign Terrorist Organization.
The Justice Department’s Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms recently confirmed to Clarion Project that it still has Fuqra members under investigation. ATF has prosecuted Fuqra members on firearms-related charges, including illegal possession of guns.
Clarion Project also recently reported that Fuqra’s General Counsel, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, is running for Congress in Massachusetts.