Finsbury Park Mosque: How it went from an ‘al-Qaeda guesthouse’ to a model of moderation

There was a time when Finsbury Park Mosque had everything required by those seeking to portray Britain as riddled with ‘enemy combatants’ plotting to turn the country into a Muslim-controlled ‘Sharia Land’.

It was once described as an “al-Qaeda guesthouse in London”.  It assisted in the radicalisation of ‘shoebomber’ Richard Reid, the Briton who tried to blow up a passenger jet in 2001 using a bomb hidden in his trainers, and Zacarias Moussaoui, one of the 9/11 plotters.

But best of all, it had the perfect tabloid villain: radical imam Abu Hamza, the “hook-handed preacher of hate”.

In the aftermath of Sunday night’s terror attack that left one dead and 11 injured, some seemed keen to resurrect this past.  (While ignoring the fact that the spot where the terror attack happened was actually slightly closer to the Muslim Welfare House in Finsbury…

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