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A man from Lancashire who encouraged Islamic extremists to wage jihad in the West, including targeting Prince George and injecting poison in to supermarket ice-cream, has been convicted today (31 May).
Husnain Rashid, 32, posted messages online glorifying successful terrorist atrocities committed by others while encouraging and inciting his readers to plan and commit attacks.
One of his posts included a photograph of Prince George, along with the address of his school, a black silhouette of a jihad fighter and the message ìeven the royal family will not be left aloneî.
His common theme was that attacks could be carried out by one individual acting alone. Rashid suggested perpetrators had the option of using poisons, vehicles, weapons, bombs, chemicals or knives. Rashid uploaded terrorist material to an online library he created with the goal of helping others plan an attack.
He also planned to travel to Turkey and Syria with the intention of fighting in Daesh-controlled territories. He contacted individuals he believed to be in Daesh territory, seeking advice on how to reach Syria and how to obtain the required authorisation necessary to join a fighting group.
Rashid provided one individual who had travelled to Syria and was known online as ìRepunzelî, with information about methods of shooting down aircraft and jamming missile systems.
All the offences relate to Rashidís activities online between October 2016 and his arrest in November 2017.
Rashidís trial started on 23 May at Woolwich Crown Court but he changed his plea to guilty on four counts on 31 May. He will be sentenced on 28 June.
Sue Hemming from the CPS said: ìHusnain Rashid is an extremist who not only sought to encourage others to commit attacks on targets in the West but was planning to travel aboard so he could fight himself.
ìHe tried to argue that he had not done anything illegal but with the overwhelming weight of evidence against him he changed his plea to guilty.
ìThe judge will now deci
Greater Manchester Police
A man from Lancashire who encouraged Islamic extremists to wage jihad in the West, including targeting Prince George and injecting poison in to supermarket ice-cream, has been convicted today (31 May). Husnain Rashid, 32, posted messages online glorifying successful terrorist atrocities committed by others while encouraging and inciting his readers to plan and commit attacks. One of his posts included a photograph of Prince George, along with the address of his school, a black silhouette of a jihad fighter and the message ìeven the royal family will not be left aloneî. His common theme was that attacks could be carried out by one individual acting alone. Rashid suggested perpetrators had the option of using poisons, vehicles, weapons, bombs, chemicals or knives. Rashid uploaded terrorist material to an online library he created with the goal of helping others plan an attack. He also planned to travel to Turkey and Syria with the intention of fighting in Daesh-controlled territories. He contacted individuals he believed to be in Daesh territory, seeking advice on how to reach Syria and how to obtain the required authorisation necessary to join a fighting group. Rashid provided one individual who had travelled to Syria and was known online as ìRepunzelî, with information about methods of shooting down aircraft and jamming missile systems. All the offences relate to Rashidís activities online between October 2016 and his arrest in November 2017. Rashidís trial started on 23 May at Woolwich Crown Court but he changed his plea to guilty on four counts on 31 May. He will be sentenced on 28 June. Sue Hemming from the CPS said: ìHusnain Rashid is an extremist who not only sought to encourage others to commit attacks on targets in the West but was planning to travel aboard so he could fight himself. ìHe tried to argue that he had not done anything illegal but with the overwhelming weight of evidence against him he changed his plea to guilty. ìThe judge will now deci
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FILE - In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave flags on their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, while riding in Raqqa, Syria. Simultaneous attacks on the Islamic State-held city of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa, the de facto IS capital across the border in eastern Syria, would make military sense: They would make it harder for the extremists to move reinforcements and deny them a safe haven. (Militant website via AP, File)
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FILE - In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave flags on their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, while riding in Raqqa, Syria. Simultaneous attacks on the Islamic State-held city of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa, the de facto IS capital across the border in eastern Syria, would make military sense: They would make it harder for the extremists to move reinforcements and deny them a safe haven. (Militant website via AP, File)
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(FILES) This image grab taken from a propaganda video released on July 5, 2014 by al-Furqan Media allegedly shows the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul. 
The Russian army on June 16, 2017 said it hit Islamic State leaders in an airstrike in Syria last month and was seeking to verify whether IS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had been killed. In a statement, the army said Sukhoi warplanes carried out a 10-minute night-time strike on May 28 at a location near Raqa, where IS leaders had gathered to plan a pullout by militants from the group's stronghold.
 / AFP PHOTO / AL-FURQAN MEDIA / --/AFP/Getty Images
(FILES) This image grab taken from a propaganda video released on July 5, 2014 by al-Furqan Media allegedly shows the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul. The Russian army on June 16, 2017 said it hit Islamic State leaders in an airstrike in Syria last month and was seeking to verify whether IS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had been killed. In a statement, the army said Sukhoi warplanes carried out a 10-minute night-time strike on May 28 at a location near Raqa, where IS leaders had gathered to plan a pullout by militants from the group's stronghold. / AFP PHOTO / AL-FURQAN MEDIA / --/AFP/Getty Images
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ISIS leader seemingly breaks silence

Story highlights

Former Iraqi lawmaker Ameena Saeed Hasan works to rescue Yazidi women captured by ISIS

She runs a helpline taking calls from the women, and arranges for them to be brought to safety

Hasan says many women have taken their own lives, rather than remain enslaved by ISIS militants

(CNN) —  

“Hello?” The voice is muffled, crackly, and barely audible, but the caller’s desperation is clear: “Our situation is very bad and cannot get any worse.”

On the other end of the phone, Ameena Saeed Hasan offers a lifeline: the chance to plot an escape from slavery at the hands of ISIS.

Every day, Hasan takes calls like this one. A former Iraqi lawmaker, she is now making it her mission to rescue as many Yazidi women as she can.

When ISIS first captured Mosul, Hasan thought the Yazidi on Mount Sinjar would be safe.

“We said ‘Why would they come to Sinjar?’” she recalls. “There is no oil or anything. What would they take?”

But ISIS fighters did come to Sinjar. There may not have been any oil reserves for them to steal, but instead they took another of the region’s most important resources: its people.

Islamic militants captured thousands of Yazidi women and children, and killed the men. ISIS claims the Quran justifies taking non-Muslim women and girls captive, and permits their rape.

The Yazidis, a small Iraqi minority who believe in a single god who created the Earth and left it in the care of a peacock angel, have been subjected to large-scale persecution by ISIS, which accuses them of devil worship.

The United Nations has accused ISIS of committing genocide against the Yazidis.

The families of many of the missing have reached out to Hasan for help.

“People know me,” she explains. “I am from Sinjar and also I am Yazidi. I know many people who were kidnapped. Some were my relatives, my neighbors, and they called me.”

Together with her husband, Khalil, Hasan manages a network to smuggle the women out: she takes the calls, and Khalil makes the dangerous journey to the Iraq-Syria border to bring them to safety.

So far, the couple has rescued more than a hundred people. One of the first was a 35-year-old woman with six children – all of whom had been captured, bought and sold in ISIS’ slave markets.

In her desperate call to Hasan, she described what had happened to them: “They loaded two big trucks from the village and took them somewhere, I don’t know where. When they were loading people on to the truck, a woman started arguing with them, so they killed her.”

Despite her horrific ordeal, the kidnapped woman in this recording was one of the lucky ones – she got out, eventually.

Others are not so fortunate. Hasan says many women, repeatedly raped and abused by their captors, have taken their own lives rather than wait to be saved.

“We just want them to be rescued,” she says, through tears of sadness and frustration. “Hundreds of girls have committed suicide.

“I have some pictures of the girls who have committed suicide … when they lose hope for rescue and when ISIS many times sell them and rape them … I think there is maybe 100. We lost contact with most of them.”

Hasan’s work has been recognized with an award from the U.S. State Department for the help she’s given to ISIS slaves.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry praised her “courageous efforts on behalf of the Yazidi religious minority in northern Iraq, for insisting that the world give heed to the horrors that they face, and … firm commitment to helping the victims and saving lives.”

But she is haunted by the thought of those she could not save.

“I cannot sleep, I cannot forget what has happened to them,” she says.

“[They ask] When will you rescue us? But I don’t have the answer. I’m not a government. I’m not anything. I’m just people. It’s very difficult.”

Many have joined the fight against ISIS; instead of bombs and bullets, Hasan’s weapon is her phone; with it, she offers hope, however distant, and a promise that help is coming.

CNN’s Bryony Jones contributed to this report.