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Ex-Penarth pupil and ISIS terrorist begs to return to UK

An Islamic State fighter and former Penarth student has told of his six years as a recruiter for the terrorist group after being tracked down by journalists.

Aseel Muthana, a former St Cyres school pupil, left Butetown, where he lived with his brother and parents, to join IS in 2014 - and now he wants to return.

Aseel, now 24, told the Sunday Mirror of crucifixions, beheadings, and bragged that he "missed" seeing homosexuals being thrown from rooftops.

He secretly travelled to Syria at the age of 17, telling his parents he was going to a friend’s house for maths revision.

Aseel has been on the United Nations sanction list since 2015, after he and brother Nasser appeared in IS propaganda videos. Nasser is believed to have been killed by an air strike in 2016.

Aseel bragged on social media he was “100 per cent pro” the brutality used by ISIS.

Speaking to the Mirror, he expressed regret that he never saw the rooftop ritual inflicted on homosexuals.

Nasser headed to Syria around the start of 2013. He spoke to Aseel on Skype and the younger brother, then 17, saved £300 and flew out at the end of the year.

Aseel claims his brother was at fault for seducing him to terrorism and taught him how to fire an AK-47. But he denies being a fighter or taking part in violence.

“I feel abandoned by the UK. I have human rights. I should be rehabilitated,” he told the Mirror.

“I mean, okay, let’s say I was a criminal – you can’t just leave me. It’s normal – for human rights. Even if I was a criminal I should be rehabilitated. Have some sort of contact with my family, my country.

“I don’t justify any innocent killings or murders but when you see so much bloodshed on both sides. ISIS killing innocent people...I stopped having an opinion.”

He described how Nasser died in a drone strike in Mosul, Iraq, where the caliphate was born.

“I understand why he got droned," he said of his brother. "He was posing a threat to the West and UK, calling for attacks.

“It’s the consequences, it is going to happen. It’s war. You don’t go to war and expect roses and petals to be thrown at you."

He then, unemotionally, described the drone attack in February 2016. It was 9pm and they were walking the streets of Mosul.

Aseel said Nasser told him: “I am tired of trying to run away from death. If they want to kill me they can kill me.”

Twenty minutes later, Aseel was in a shop when Nasser was hit by a missile. With no emotion, he recalled: “His face was hacked – smashed in. He had shrapnel all over his body.”

Ahmed Muthana yesterday said he hoped his son – “polite” and “conservative” before being radicalised – would be allowed back into the UK.

He said: “He would have to go to prison, put him in rehabilitation, deradicalise him.”

But he dismissed the idea that Aseel was trapped under the influence of Nasser.

Ahmed, 63, added: “No, different minds, they are different. They dreamed of being in that country, but who guided them to there?”

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