30/08/22

Man jailed in Australia for advocating terrorism on YouTube

Abdussalam Adina-Zada, a former University of Western Australia researcher, has been jailed for three-and-a-half years for advocating terrorism via YouTube videos where he praised the virtues of violence and martyrdom.

A self-styled future political leader of Tajikistan, Adina-Zada has been in prison since his arrest in December 2020.

In his YouTube videos, which have been watched more than 1.6 million times, he called for the Tajiki government to be overthrown. He spoke about how he was inspired by groups such as the Taliban in Afghanistan and ISIS in Syria.

78 per cent of his viewers were in Russia and 12 per cent in Tajikistan. The videos were viewed 10,000 times in Australia.

The videos urged viewers to acquire weapons, power and influence to create an army, which would then mount a violent insurrection over the government and rid it of the influence of foreign "infidels" like Russia and China.

With time already served, since is his arrest in December 2020, he could be released in August next year.

A joint counterterrorism team searched his car and house in April 2020 and seized a mobile phone, laptop and hard drive. In an interview, he agreed to deactivate his YouTube channel, but reactivated it six weeks later.

District Court Judge Troy Sweeney said Adina-Zada's behaviour was a threat to Australia's desire for "tolerance, multiculturalism and freedom of speech".

Adina-Zada was born in Tajikistan and moved to Australia in 2006.


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