Monday, June 13th, 2016

Omar Mateen: Radical Islamist or mentally unstable?

NK Bhoopesh | June 13, 2016 1:09 pm Print
FBI has questioned Omar Mateen twice for his alleged connection with radical Islamist groups, but he was not in FBI's terror watch list

Omar Mateen, the man who killed 50 people in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida is a US citizen , had been known to the FBI.

Initial reports quoting various intelligence sources suggest that the 29 year old had some leanings towards radical islamist ideology. But it has not been ascertained whether he was acting at the behest of ISIS or other terrorist organisations.

But the IS has said that its fighter has carried out the attack, but it is not sure whether it is taking credit for inspiring the attack.

NBC news quoted Mateen’s father Seddique Mateen, who was referred to as Seddique Mir initially,  as saying that the attack had nothing to do with religion. He said his son was very angry after seeing two men kissing in downtown Miami recently. He claimed that his family was not aware of Mateen’s moves and they are in shock like the whole country.

BBC quoting reports said that FBI had interviewed him twice in 2013, following inflammatory comments to a colleague. According to BBC report he was again questioned for his alleged connection with Muhammed Abu Salha, a US citizen who carried out suicide attack in Syria. But FBI could not establish terror links.

Though he was on FBI radar Mateen was not on the terror watch list of the FBI, which enabled him to hold fire arm license.

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He was working as an armed security officer in a firm since 2007.

Mateen was born in 1986 in New York after his parents migrated from Afghanistan to the US.

BBC quoting his ex-wife, Sitora Yusufiy, has said that he was short tempered, abusive and violent.

Yusufiy said he was not very religious. She said he was bipolar and quoted as saying that the real reason behind his actions might be mental illness.

In a series of Facebook posts Mateen is seen as wearing T shirts emblazoned with New York Police . But the authorities said he has no connection with the department.

There are several videos posted on YouTube and Facebook, under elder Mateen’s name. In some of these he claims that he is the interim president of Afghanistan. While most of his speeches in Dari are incoherent, he praises the Afghan Taliban, while denouncing the Pakistan government.

Hours before the Orlando shooting, he posted a video on a Facebook in which Mateen senior seems to be pretending to be Afghanistan’s president, heading the provisional government of Afghanistan. Dressed in army fatigues he orders the arrest of a slew of Afghan leaders.

“I order national army, national police and intelligence department to immediately imprison Karzai, Ashraf Ghani, Zalmay Khalilzad, Atmar, and Sayyaf. They are against our countrymen, and against our homeland,”Seddique Mateen said.