Man linked to 'terrorist supporter' cancels visit to city

Akram Buksh Photo Facebook
Akram Buksh. Facebook

CONCERNS had been raised about the visit to Toowoomba of an Imam who has supported a man accused of financing terrorists - but he has since changed his plans.

Slacks Creek Imam Akram Buksh - who was to be a guest speaker at an upcoming open day at the Garden City Mosque in Toowoomba - reportedly wrote an affidavit in support of Walid Sukkarieh's third bid for freedom before his bail hearing in the Brisbane in December.

Sukkarieh - who is awaiting trial - was arrested in September 2014 after an undercover operation by the Australian Federal Police.

He's accused of sending money to Syrian fighters and encouraged followers to donate money to buy weapons and bullets

In the affidavit Imam Buksh said Succarieh was a "friend" and "good man".

He also described Islamic State as a "disgrace" that did not "represent Islam at all".

He told of his surprise that Succarieh had allegedly been connected with a terrorist movement.

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Sonja Cover, of Meandarra, said various anti-Islamic groups on the Darling Downs were perturbed by the choice of Imam Buksh as one of the main speakers at the Garden City Mosque open day on Sunday.

She said his support of Succarieh made him an inappropriate choice as a guest speaker.

A spokesman for the mosque said Mr Buksh had since said he would not be attending the open day.

Founding President of Toowoomba Islamic Society Professor Shahjahan Khan said: "Imam Buksh informed us that he in unable to participate in the food festival as he is going abroad this week.

"So, he will not be at the function."

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