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Peter Cherif

Born: 01 January 1982 to 31 December 1982;


Place of Birth: Parc des Buttes Chaumont, France;


Activities:

He is a foreign fighter and member of al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).


Cherif converted to Islam in 2003. His mentor was Farid Benyettou. In early 2004, he took part in protests against French law banning Islamic head scarves in public schools.


He left for Damascus in May 2004, saying he was going to join friends studying at a Koranic school. The school was known as a way station for EU fighters on their way to Iraq.


In 2004, Peter known as Abu Hamza, was captured while fighting for al-Qa’ida in Iraq (AQI) near Fallujah.


He was convicted in Baghdad in July 2006 for illegally crossing the border, and sentenced to 15 years in prison. He escaped in March 2007 after an insurgent attack and prison break, and then traveled to Syria.


Cherif was later arrested in Syria, extradited, and served 18 months in jail in France. He was released pending trial and fled the country to Yemen. Cherif was sentenced to five years in prison, in abstentia, for being a member of a terrorist organization.


In the summer of 2011, he was present at a meeting with two other man in Yemen to plan the Charlie Hebdo shooting. Those two men were Salim Benghalem and Cherif Kouachi. Peter helped provide Kouachi with cash and a few days of al Qaeda training.


It is believed he has been involved in the recruitment of foreign fighters and facilitated their travel to Yemen from Tunisia, via Oman.

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