VANCOUVER, B.C. – Othman Hamdan, the 36-year-old Fort St. John resident who has been charged with numerous offences including instructing someone to carry out a terrorist act says he was using social media to ‘shine a light on atrocities in the Middle East.’
Hamdan told B.C. Supreme Court on Wednesday his posts were meant to highlight government clashes against citizens during the Arab Spring that started in Tunisia in 2010 and spread to Syria and other locations.
Hamdan also apparently told the court that he was worried about rape being used as a ‘weapon of
war’ against women as well as younger men and children. He then says he started expressing his views on the matters in support of people that were being ‘squashed’.
He has plead not guilty to encouraging the commission of murder, assault and mischief as well as the terror related charges.
Hamdan also told court that he saw Facebook accounts using an Islamic insignia were being deleted and he then decided to launch his own page which used a pixilated form of same image to see what would happen. He then learnt that his page was suspended.
He claims he left the Islamic religion after moving to the U.S. in 1999. He then says he converted to Christianity but left the Christian faith and returned to his former faith. He also stated that he no longer is practicing the religion.