Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now
Wednesday 31 May 2023 Dublin: 12°C
Kuwait-born Mohammed Emwazi came to Britain as a small child.
# radicalised
Mother of 'Jihadi John' says she recognised son's voice in hostage videos
His fomr

THE MOTHER OF the Islamic State militant known as “Jihadi John” has said she immediately recognised his voice when she heard him on a hostage video released by Islamic State.

The BBC reports that Mohammed Emwazi’s parents had not seen him since 2013. He told them he said he was going to do humanitarian work. 

As a student he was  described as a relatively hardworking student who showed no signs of being radicalised, his former school principal has.

Jo Shuter, former head teacher at Quintin Kynaston Academy in London, told the BBC that Mohammed Emwazi was a “hardworking and aspirational young man” when she knew him as a teenager.

“He was quiet, he was reasonably hardworking,” Shuter said. Emwazi had “adolescent issues” and was bullied at school, she added, but he eventually settled down and did well enough academically to be admitted to the university that was his first choice.

“I can’t stress enough, he wasn’t a huge concern to us,” she said.

Emwazi was revealed last week to be the masked Islamic State militant known as “Jihadi John” who appears in several online beheading videos brandishing a large knife.

Authorities are working to understand how he became radicalised.

The Kuwait-born Emwazi came to Britain as a small child, attending state schools in London before studying computer science at the University of Westminster. He left for Syria in 2013.

He was interrogated by security services while in Britain but was never arrested or charged.

Shuter said neither Emwazi nor other students showed signs of embracing radical causes while at school.

Two other former students from the same school were also thought to have gone to fight in Syria and Somalia.

Read: ‘Jihadi John’: A quiet football fan who developed thirst for war >

Read: Islamic State killer ‘Jihadi John’ has been named >

Associated Foreign Press
Your Voice
Readers Comments