Name of Organization   Al-Haramain Foundation (Pakistan)

 

Formation  

The organization was formed as a charity in 1988. Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation is a branch of the Muslim World League (MWL) charity founded in 1988. It was also believed to be closely linked to the Saudi government. It had 3,000 employees and an annual budget $40 – 60 million. It had branches in about 50 countries, including a US branch based in Oregon [1]

 

Leadership   Founder of Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation:

As per the available information, there is no detailed profile of Aqeel Abdul Aziz Aqeel al-Aqeel apart from his affiliation with Al-Haramain Foundation. Aqeel was the Chairman, Director General, President and Founder of Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation from 1988 – 2004. As per action taken by the US and Saudi government (Ministry of religious affairs) regarding the organization’s involvement with terrorist groups, he along with the Deputy General and two other senior officials was fired from these posts in 2004. However, he remained chairman of the board of directors of the foundation’s branch in Netherlands till 2004 and has considerable influence over the activities carried out by the organization worldwide [2]

Leadership in Pakistan:

Ahmed Said Khadr was an Egyptian born Canadian, who studied engineering from University of Ottawa in the late 70s. Later, he joined the university’s Muslim Student Association (MSA) [3]. In 1980, he travelled to Afghanistan where he was involved in fighting the Soviet forces during which, he also established contact with Osama Bin Laden. Later on, he joined Al Haramain Foundation to run its office in Pakistan (located in Karachi). He conducted service delivery and charitable activities including setting up of orphanages, medical clinics and agricultural projects in support of militant organizations [4]

He was arrested in 1996 for financing the bomb attack on Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, but was later released on the request of Canadian Government [5]. He was also considered as a founding member of Al-Qaeda and was heading the Al-Haramain Foundation in Pakistan. Following 9/11 he was put on suspected terrorist list and was later killed in 2003, in a shootout with Pakistani security forces [6]. After Khadr’s death, Sheikh Asadullah took over his position, however he was also killed a few years later (details about Asadullah are not available) [7].

 

School of Thought   Wahabi

It is a reform movement in Islam, originating in Arabia.It was founded by Muhammad ibnAbdal-Wahab (c.1703–1791), influenced by IbnTaymiyya; involving essentially a purification of the Sunni sect. It is taught that all accretions to Islam after the 3rd century of the Muslim era or after 950 C.E. are unauthentic and must be taken out [8]. Al-Harmain Foundation apparently aims to promote Wahabi ideology through charity around the world. However, it has links with various extremist militant organizations, while promoting violence and armed conflict [9].

 

Structure of the Organization  

It is a non-government organization. The main leadership is based in Saudi Arabia, while the members are also Saudi citizens. Country offices are managed by nationals of each country. In Pakistan, Ahmed Said Khadr was the head of operations before his demise and after his death, his successor was Sheikh Asadullah. The organization is considered to be non-governmental but it has acquired charity from the Saudi government and some officials also had nominal roles in its management. Saudi Minister for religious affairs was the chairman of Al-Haramain’s board in 2004 [10].

 

Financial Resources  

The organization acquired charity from wealthy individuals and groups from Middle East, specifically Saudi Arabia. It is also reported to have acquired funding also from the Saudi Government. Moreover, the organization is also alleged for acquiring finances through Smuggling, drug running and prostitution [11].

 

Status  

Disbanded [12] and proscribed on January 26, 2004 by UN Security Council [13] &March 06, 2012 in Pakistan

 

Recruitment tools & demographics  

The organization utilized tools such as community services in regions including Africa, Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia, Europe and North America targeting Muslim communities. They built mosques, carried out water provision activities, provided meals, established and equipped medical facilities and operated orphanages. This assisted them in creating inroads into the communities while also acquiring up to 3000 recruits in their foundation. They also funded the staff and imam in the mosques established by them. Through this manner, they promoted their ideology and acquired supporters [14].

 

Ideology  

Al-Haramain aimed at promoting Wahabi ideology through charity including development of medical facilities, setting up of mosques and provision of clean water; around the world and encouraged “callers to Islam to teach the people good and to warn them from wrongs”. Apparently, they carried out charitable activities for vulnerable communities however they funded various militant organizations to promote violence [15].

 

Areas of Operation   It was based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia while operating in 50 countries including Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bosnia, Albania, Indonesia, Kenya, Nigeria, Netherlands, Somalia, Tanzania, United States, Ethiopia and Comoros. The details of remaining 36 countries are not available [16]

 

Linkages  

Al-Haramain Foundation is alleged to have links with Al-Qaeda, Lashkar-e Taiba, and Afghan Taliban [17].

Tools  

Print Media:

Publications:
From the information acquired they have utilized books and pamphlets for promoting their activities, but no example or detail of such material is available. Reason being that this organization has been dismantled and deemed proscribed for a while now (2004), therefore most of details regarding its operations are unavailable [18].
 

    Audio / Video:
Not Available

Social Media:
Not Available
 

web site   Not Available
Service Delivery  

According to available information, Al-Haramain used to provide services in various forms such as building of mosques, water provision projects, medical facilities and establishment of orphanages. According to estimates, they used to operate 1,299 mosques along with 20 orphanages [19].

Name Variations   No name variations of Al Haramain foundation Pakistan are known.

Who they are

Al-Haramain Foundation was a branch of Saudi based Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation, which presented itself as a charitable and educational Non-Governmental Organization. The reasons, Al-Haramain Foundation is part of the database is (a) it allegedly provided financial and logistical support to Al-Qaeda and also provided support to Lashkar-e Taiba for which the organization was banned and dismantled and (b) it fits our defined criteria for a terrorist organization. In January 2004, an employee of Al-Haramain in Pakistan was detained under United States custody on suspicion of assisting Al-Qaida. In 2002, a senior member of Al-Haramain in Pakistan, who is also believed to be a facilitator on behalf of Bin Laden, was carrying out a human smuggling ring to facilitate travel of Al-Qaida members and their families out of Afghanistan to various other countries [20].

Its main leadership was based in Saudi Arabia, while it operated in more than 50 countries including Pakistan and Afghanistan. According to available information, Al-Haramain used to provide services in various forms such as building of mosques, water provision projects, medical facilities and establishment of orphanages. There is no detailed information regarding the services and facilities provided by Al-Haramain in Pakistan. According to estimates by National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, Al-Haramain used to operate 1,299 mosques along with 20 orphanages. They utilized books and pamphlets for promoting their activities, but no example or detail of such material is available, as this organization has been dismantled and deemed proscribed for a while now (2004), therefore most of details regarding its operations are unavailable. They acquired charity mainly from the Middle East while also acquiring donations from the Saudi Government. Some Saudi Government officials also had nominal roles in Al- Haramain’s management [21]. The organization is also alleged for acquiring finances through smuggling, drug running and prostitution rings[22].

History

The organization was formed in 1988 in Saudi Arabia, as a branch of Muslim World League (MWL) charity[23]. Al-Haramain aimed at promoting Wahabi ideology through charity around the world while apparently, they carried out charitable activities for vulnerable communities. However they funded various militant organizations to promote violence. The organization was based in Riyadh, while its operations span across 50 countries worldwide, which include Pakistan and Afghanistan. The founder and chairman of the organization Aqeel Abdul Aziz Aqeel al-Aqeel remained was in charge of the organization from 1988 – 2004. As per the joint action taken by the Saudi and US Government against the organization, he was fired in 2004. The focal person of Al- Haramain in Pakistan, Ahmed Said Khadr conducted service delivery and charitable actives in support of militant organizations. He was later killed by Pakistani forces near the Pak-Afghan border in 2003.Al-Haramain Foundation in Pakistan has also provided support to Lashkar-e Taiba on various occasions[24]. On 26th January 2004 AHF was listed as being associated with Al Qaeda and Taliban for participating in the financing, planning, and facilitation of activities[25]. The organization was banned in Pakistan during 2012. The organization was banned by Saudi Government in 2004 while its head of operations Sheikh Asadullah was also killed in 2004. Since then, no details of any activities carried out by the organization have come forward.

Organization's Message

TAl-Harmain Foundation apparently aims to promote Wahabi ideology through charity around the world. However, it has links with various extremist militant organizations, while promoting violence and armed conflict[26].

Target Audience

The target audience for the activities carried out by the organization were mostly affluent individuals in the Middle East and worldwide. They also created inroads into the communities through their service delivery and encouraged people to join militant outfits[27].

 

Tools

From the information acquired it is evident that they mostly utilized books and pamphlets for promoting their message. There are no details available for the material published by Al-Harmain foundation since the organization is non-functioning from 2004[28]. 
 

Splinter Groups

N/A

 

[1]History Commons. Profile: Aqeel al-Aqeel. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=aqeel_al_aqeel_1

[2] UN Security Council.(2004). QI.A.171.04.AQEEL ABDULAZIZ AQEEL AL-AQEEL. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1267/NSQI17104E.shtml.

[3] Point De Bascule. (2013). Ahmed Said Khadr’s radicalization at the University of Ottawa. Retrieved on; August 01, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.pointdebasculecanada.ca/archives/10002870-ahmed-said-khadr%E2%80%99s-radicalization-at-the-university-of-ottawa.html.

[4] Huang, Michelle. Toronto Star, "Bombing suspect pins 'last hope' on Chrétien", December 30, 1995

[5] Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). Ahmed Said Khadr. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.cbc.ca/news/interactives/khadr/slides.html.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Roggio, B. (2007). The Talibans internecine war in Waziristan, Pakistan. The Long War Journal. Retrieved on August 7, 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2007/04/the_talibans_interne.php

[8] Infoplease.(2012). Wahhabi.Retrieved on: August 1, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.infoplease.com/encyclopedia/society/wahhabi.html.

[9] Ibid.

[10] History Commons. Profile: Aqeel al-Aqeel. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=aqeel_al_aqeel_1.

[11] History Commons. Profile: Al Haramain Islamic Foundation (AHIF). Retrieved on: August 1, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=al_haramain_foundation_1

[12] History Commons. Profile: Aqeel al-Aqeel. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=aqeel_al_aqeel_1

[13] UN Security Council.(2004). QE.A.104.04. AL-HARAMAIN FOUNDATION (PAKISTAN). Retrieved on: July 15, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1267/NSQE10404E.shtml

[14] National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. Al Haramain Case Study. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/staff_statements/911_TerrFin_Ch7.pdf

[15] Ibid

[16] History Commons. Profile: Al Haramain Islamic Foundation (AHIF). Retrieved on: August 1, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=al_haramain_foundation_1

[17] UN Security Council.(2004). QE.A.104.04. AL-HARAMAIN FOUNDATION (PAKISTAN). Retrieved on: July 15, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1267/NSQE10404E.shtml

[18] National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. Al Haramain Case Study.Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/staff_statements/911_TerrFin_Ch7.pdf

[19] Ibid.

[20] UN Security Council.(2004). QE.A.104.04. AL-HARAMAIN FOUNDATION (PAKISTAN). Retrieved on: July 15, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1267/NSQE10404E.shtml

[21] National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. Al Haramain Case Study. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/staff_statements/911_TerrFin_Ch7.pdf

[22] History Commons. Profile: Al Haramain Islamic Foundation (AHIF). Retrieved on: August 1, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=al_haramain_foundation_1

[23] History Commons. Profile: Aqeel al-Aqeel. Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=aqeel_al_aqeel_1

[24] Islam Daily.(2004). Al Haramain Foundation (Pakistan).Retrieved on: July 15, 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.islamdaily.org/en/charities/532.al-haramain-foundation-pakistan.htm

[25] UN Security Council.(2004). QE.A.104.04. AL-HARAMAIN FOUNDATION (PAKISTAN). Retrieved on: July 15, 2013.Retrieved from: http://www.un.org/sc/committees/1267/NSQE10404E.shtml.

[26] Ibid.

[27] Ibid.

[28] National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. Al Haramain Case Study.Retrieved on: July 26, 2013.Retrieved from: http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/staff_statements/911_TerrFin_Ch7.pdf.