FBI Label Mohammad Abdulazeez a “Violent extremist”

CHATTANOOGA,TN, (WDEF)-Hixson residents Mohammad Abdulazeez and Ariel Bradley have  been described by friends and family as extremely devout and passionate Islamic followers.

Both frequented University Pizza & Deli, a hub for Muslim students studying at UTC.

Akram Musa, University Pizza & Deli,"What he did it does not represent any Muslims in the word, definitely because Islam to me is peaceful religion and God never give anyone any authority to take anybody’s soul".

Abdulazeez also spent long periods of time overseas from 2010 onwards including time in Jordan with his uncle.

Dr. Richard Jones of Lee University studied radical fundamentalism in Jordan and Egypt and is now back in Cleveland.

"Part of the radicalization process, especially in Islam is to keep it secret, because you know these media are being monitored so it is difficult to detect".

Jones feels social media and the internet have allowed radical beliefs to spread quicker and to more vulnerable people.

"To feel part of a larger community and feel significance in that, it’s a lot easier to get people to join because of the special feeling that people have when they become members of those online communities".

Ariel Bradley a supporter of Abdulazeezs’ terror attacks would have been an easy target according to her ex boyfriend.

Dave, Ex-Boyfriend of Ariel Bradley,"She could have just have well have gotten drawn into the 12 Tribes, The Yellow Deli, she bounced around so many ideologies".

The FBI is not yet confirming whether or not Abdulazeez was radicalized merely referring to him as a "homegrown violent extremist".

Dr. Jones added that many devout believers project a very different persona when online in an effort to find others who share their beliefs.

Categories: Local News

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