• Alleged Maute recruiter says she was only helping ‘propagate Islam’


    AN alleged recruiter for the Maute group denied the accusation against her, saying that she was just helping “propagate Islam”.

    “I have nothing to do with all those accusations. I have nothing to with that [involvement with Maute group]. I strongly deny all the false accusations hurled against me,” Karen Aizha Hamidon told reporters in a chance interview after appearing at the hearing called by Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Peter Ong at the Department of Justice (DOJ).

    “I was just helping propagate Islam,” she said.

    Hamidon, who was arrested in her condominium in Taguig City last October 11, was facing 14 counts for rebellion or inciting to rebellion in relation to Section 6 of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 (Republic Act 10175) filed by the National Bureau of Investigation Counter Terrorism Division (NBI-CTD).

    On the day Hamidon was arrested, NBI agents discovered her messages on Telegram, a social media application like Facebook, asking local and foreign Muslims to join the Maute fighters.

    The Maute group, which has links with international terror group Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (ISIS) attacked Marawi City last May 23 in a bid to establish an independent state.

    Foreign fighters were among those killed during the five- month war.

    Hamidon was represented by lawyer Maria Elisa Jonalyn Barquez of the Public Attorney’s Office.

    Hamidon admitted to being the wife of the late Mohammad Jaafar Maguid, also known as Tokboy and Abu Sharifa, the former leader of the Ansar Khalifa Philippines, the group allegedly responsible for the deadly night market attack in Davao City in September 2016.

    She also did not deny that she was the former wife of Muhammad Shamin Mohammed Sidek, a Singaporean national who is currently detained in a jail in the city state for his links with ISIS.

    Hamidon is scheduled to file her counter-affidavit on November 10.



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