‘Paraglider protesters’ are bailed after pro-Palestinian march

Three women have pleaded not guilty to displaying images indicating support for banned terrorist organisation Hamas at a pro-Palestinian march in central London.

Heba Alhayek, 29, Pauline Ankunda, 26, and Noimutu Olayinka Taiwo, 27, were all charged under the Terrorism Act as part of the same investigation, for allegedly wearing or displaying images of paragliders during the demonstration in Whitehall on October 14.

Alhayek and Ankunda, both from Crystal Palace, south-east London, were charged on November 3 with carrying or displaying an article to arouse reasonable suspicion that they are supporters of banned organisation Hamas.

Taiwo, from Croydon, south London, was charged with the same offence on Thursday.

The three appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court yesterday as co-defendants and were granted unconditional bail ahead of a two-day trial on February 12 at the same court.

Heba Alhayek, 29, and Pauline Ankunda, 26, both of south London, were charged with terror offences after this image circulated on social media. Noimutu Olayinka Taiwo was also charged

The offence the women are accused of is contrary to section 13(1) of the Terrorism Act 2000

Prosecutor Mark Luckett said: ‘The prosecution say that there is a clear and unique association between the image of a paraglider and the Hamas terrorist attack a week earlier.’

He added that wearing an item of clothing displaying an image associated with the Hamas attacks ‘glorifies the actions of the group by celebrating the unique, successful tactic used by them’. Militants from the group, banned as a terror organisation by the UK, used paragliders to enter Israel from Gaza on October 7 before killing more than 1,400 Israelis.

The offence the women are accused of is contrary to section 13(1) of the Terrorism Act 2000.

Commander Dominic Murphy, of the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command, said: ‘On this case and others, officers are working tirelessly to investigate alleged offences linked to protest activity, and take action when there is evidence of criminality.’

He added: ‘We will continue to work with the Crown Prosecution Service to bring charges against people suspected of committing offences that encourage hate and are harmful to communities.’


Related posts