Man found guilty of wearing headband in support of Hamas

A man has been found guilty of wearing a headband in support of Hamas at a pro-Palestine rally in central London.

Khaled Hajsaad, 24, who has been living in Birmingham, wore the clothing at a pro-Palestine rally in Trafalgar Square on November 25, 2023.

The green headband had the “Shahada” written on it in white – the basic statement of the Islamic faith, the court was told previously.

The defendant had previously told police the headband was “an item of Saudi Arabia” and the Shahada was a “statement of my faith”.

District Judge Nina Tempia told the court: “Hamas is the most notable Palestinian group associated with the colour green … He was wearing the headband at the pro-Palestinian march, where there would be no reasons for someone to wear the headband of a Saudi flag.

“It clearly did not have the Saudi sword on it.

“I find the defendant guilty of the offence.”

On the offence, Judge Tempia added: “I find the harm serious and … when (the offence) happened, so soon after October 7, it would have meant significant distress.”

Hajsaad, described as an asylum seeker who arrived in the UK a year ago, had previously entered a not guilty plea.

He is due to be sentenced on June 21 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court.

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