Self-exiled founder, 66, of one of Pakistan’s biggest political parties appears in UK court for ‘encouraging terrorism’ over claim he ‘incited mob in Karachi to attack media organisations in speech transmitted from London’
- Altaf Hussain spoke to supporters over the phone and it was played on speaker
- The 66-year-old is the founder of MQM party, an opposition outfit in Pakistan
- Appeared in court today charged with one count of encouraging terrorism
Altaf Hussain (pictured) faced Westminster Magistrates’ Court today
The self-exiled founder of one of Pakistan’s biggest political parties appeared in court today charged with encouraging terrorism.
Altaf Hussain allegedly relayed a speech from London inciting a mob in Karachi to attack media groups in August 2016.
The 66-year-old addressed supporters of his MQM party in Pakistan’s biggest city via telephone and the speech was played to crowds by loudspeaker.
Mr Hussain appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court dark suit and pink shirt and spoke only to confirm his name and address and British nationality.
Prosecutor Kathryn Selby said: ‘Mr Hussain is alleged back on the 22 August 2016 to have delivered a speech to crowds in Karachi, Pakistan.
‘The speech was made from London. It was transmitted to the press club and Karachi.
‘It will be the be the Crown’s case that it would be used to encourage an act of terrorism. ‘
Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot said: ‘Mr Hussain, your next appearance will be at the Central Criminal Court because I find my powers of punishment, were you to be convicted, will be insufficient.’
Altaf Hussain, who lives in Mill Hill, north London, faced Westminster Magistrates’ Court (pictured) today after a speech he made over the phone was played on loudspeaker to his supporters in Karachi.
Hussain, of Mill Hill, north London, is charged with one count of encouraging terrorism.
He was granted bail with conditions to reside at his home address on a tagged midnight to 9am curfew; for his passport to remain with police; not to apply for travel documents and not to broadcast any message, video or audio or TV, radio or social media discussing this case or commenting on the political situation in Pakistan.
His next court appearance will be at the Old Bailey on 1 November.