Scot dubbed ‘Tartan Taliban’ accused of teaching insurgents to make bombs

McLintock pictured in 2004. Picture: TSPL
McLintock pictured in 2004. Picture: TSPL
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A Muslim convert known as the “Tartan Taliban” stands accused of teaching insurgents how to use deadly roadside bombs.

Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) – a London-based charity - points the finger at Dundee-born James McLintock, 53, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi.

He is included in newly-published AOAV dossier on the “regional and transnational networks that facilitate improvised explosive devices (IED) use”.

McLintock is president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation (RWO), which claims to help orphans.

But the US Treasury alleges it has been providing money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups.

McLintock and the RWO have ‘categorically denied’ all accusations.

The new AOAV report states: “McLintock is said to have hired fighters to obtain photos and personal details of children in order to create falsified dossiers and attract funding for the Taliban under the guise of supporting orphans.

“RWO has supposedly been used as a front to fund militant activities in Kunar Province and McLintock has reportedly provided funds to Shaykh Aminullah, who runs the designated Ganj Madrasa, which has been said to provide funds to the Taliban.

“In 2013, McLintock met with several Taliban commanders and was actively involved in preparing madrasa students to travel and fight in Afghanistan, as well as teaching insurgents how to use IEDs.

“According to the Treasury, RWO was used as a front to collect more than $180,000 from unknowing UK donors that went directly into Taliban hands.

“Interestingly, RWO has currently or in the past, at least according to their website, several cooperative efforts together with organisations around the world.

RWO was used as a front to collect more than $180,000 from unknowing UK donors that went directly into Taliban hands, says the US Treasury.

IEDs have rapidly overtaken landmines as the dominant threat to civilians in conflict zones.

They consistently cause the most civilian harm of any weapon category, and between 2011 and 2015 were responsible for a shocking total of 105,071 civilian casualties – 59 per cent of all casualties from explosive violence worldwide.

The newly-published report was undertaken by the London-based charity with assistance from the Nato Counter-IED Centre of Excellence, based in Madrid.

As a boy growing up in Dundee, James McLintock was raised a Catholic.

However, it was while studying at Edinburgh University in the early 1980s that he embarked on the path that would see him fighting against communist Russians in Afghanistan.

In 2001 he was arrested on Christmas Eve at a checkpoint near Afghanistan’s border and held until he had been interrogated by intelligence services.

Wikileaks documents released three years ago suggested McLintock had links with al Qaida leader Ali Muhammad Abdul Aziz al-Fahkri.

Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) has an aim to reduce harm and rebuild lives affected by armed violence.

It does this by carrying out research and advocacy work to reduce the incidence and impact of global armed violence.

One of the main pillars of AOAV work is to monitor the impact of explosive weapons around the world and investigate what causes armed violence – from guns to suicide bombings.

Its global reporting on explosive violence is considered by many as the “main” data for such and is regularly quoted in both the media and at the highest levels of the United Nations.

McLintock, whose mother still lives in Arbroath, was last year put on the Treasury’s “specially designated global terrorist” list, which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him.

He has previously “categorically denied” allegations made by the US Treasury that his Pakistani orphanage is providing money for extremist groups.

McLintock has not responded to attempts to reach him.