Driver shocked to be asked by police officer if he supports al-Qaeda

A driver was asked if he supported terrorists when he was pulled over by police.

Mohammed Younis was told by the officer who stopped him that a black cloth he had fixed to the back of his car was a sign that he backed al-Qaeda. But the 29-year-old said the suggestion was nonsense and that the cloth was simply a good luck charm.

Mr Younis was driving along Huddersfield Road through Ravensthorpe when he was told by a police officer to pull over because he was not wearing a seatbelt. He parked in a nearby petrol station and spoke to the officer who made the claim.

He said: “I pulled into the petrol station and as I went over to the police car the officer said, ‘Do you support al-Qaeda?’ It came as a big shock to me. I was really scared that this guy was going to make something up and take me away. He said it was because I had a black cloth hanging from my car, but that cloth is there as a good luck charm.”

“This was direct discrimination against me. This officer must be saying this to many other Asians, making up silly things. It might be a joke to him but it’s not a joke to me.”

When Mr Younis asked the officer where he had heard that black cloths were a sign of supporting al-Qaeda, he was told that the officer had heard it from a former colleague.

After leaving the petrol station, Mr Younis went to Dewsbury police station where he spoke to a senior officer about what had happened. Police said they had not yet received a formal complaint. A police spokesman said: “Once we receive a complaint from Mr Younis we will look into the matter.”

Dewsbury Reporter, 4 April 2012