Al Qaeda: Prisoners Warren Weinstein and Giovanni Lo Porto allegedly reverted to Islam before being “martyred” in US drone strike


Warren Weinstein (“Uncle Ishaq”) allegedly reverted to Islam in 2013

A statement released via Usama Mahmoud, spokesperson for Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) claims that American prisoner, aid worker Warren Weinstein (73) and Italian prisoner Giovanni Lo Porto (37) allegedly reverted to Islam whilst detained in Pakistan. Weinstein is referred to as “uncle Ishaq” whilst Lo Porto by the name “brother Muhammad”. Photos of the hostages including images of Weinstein praying were also released on social media.

Both men were killed in a controversial US “signature” drone strike in January 2015 near the Afghanistan/Pakistan border confirmed by Barack Obama in April when the President accepted “full responsibility” for their deaths. AQIS deputy emir Ahmed Farouq (Raja Muhammad Salman) a US citizen from the Pakistani city of Islamabad was also said to have been killed in the same strike. Signature strikes are drone strikes aimed at targets based on the movement of military aged males under surveillance for suspicious activities and are carried out under order of the CIA without information on any specific “wanted” person in the area chosen for a missile strike.

Reprieve (human rights organization) stated the following on hearing of the drone strike, “it’s right that the White House has come clean and admitted its tragic mistake in killing these hostages, and our hearts go out to their families…. It’s worth remembering, however, that Dr. Weinstein and Mr. Lo Porto are far from the first innocents to die by our drones.”

Back in 2013, the same year AQIS claim Weinstein became a Muslim, the Guardian reported that he wrote to journalists stating,

“I have appealed several times to President Obama to help me but to no avail. I am therefore writing now to the media to ask that you help me to gain my release and rejoin my family.

“I hope that the media can mount a campaign to get the American government to actively pursue my release and to make sure that I am not forgotten and just become another statistic. Given my age and my health, I don’t have time on my side.”

Weinstein was not only left without help but actually killed by his own government.


Lo Porto alleged to have reverted  to Islam 7 months before his “martyrdom” by US signature drone strike

Lo Porto who had been working on a water sanitation project following floods in the region was captured with a German friend Bernd Mühlenbeck with whom he shared a house in Pakistan. Mühlenbeck was later freed but did not wish to discuss the circumstances of his release.

Statement released via Usama Mahmoud as follows:-


Weinstein “martyred” due to US signature drone strike in January 2015

Americans neither killed the “jew” Warren Weinstein nor the “atheist”Giovanni Lo Porto!
الحمد للہ والصلوۃ والسلام علی رسول اللہ وبعد
All praise is due to Allah and may peace and blessings of Allah (swt) be upon the Messenger of Allah.
Americans neither killed Warren Weinstein nor Giovanni Lo Porto in a so called Anti-Terrorism campaign. But they martyred our esteemed and respected uncle Ishaq the American and respected brother Muhammad the Italian by targeting them in a drone strike. انّا للہ و اِنّا اِلیہ راجعون We certainly belong to Allah, and to Him we are bound to return.
May Allah accept the martyrdom of our brothers, and help the mujahideen of Ummah to revenge our American and Italian brothers from American infidels, Amin.
Uncle Ishaq(Warren Weinstein) (May Allah have mercy on him):
• Accurately understood the righteous jihad of mujahideen of Ummah against American oppression and barbarism.
• Recognized the grandeur of Islam’s modesty and mercifulness in place of the filthy western civilization.
• Observed the compassionate dealing of Muslims in mujahideen’s society instead of the American selfish and pleasure-loving society.
• Left the Jewish ignorance and filled his heart with the glory of Islam. Thus by accepting Islam, he left the army of Satan and joined the Army of Al-Rahman. Conduct of the mujahideen, recitation of the Holy Quran and listening to the lectures of the martyred Islamic Scholar Shaykh Anwar al Awlaki (may Allah have mercy on him) helped Uncle Ishaq to recognize the Truth. This blessed journey towards Islam was completed by Uncle Ishaq himself, without any coercion or enforcement.
• Felt the grief of the oppressed Muslim Ummah and yearned for the ascendency of Islam.
Same is the case of our brother Muhammad the Italian. Formerly he was an atheist but seven months before his martyrdom, due to the reading of the Holy Quran; the darkness of his heart changed into the Light of Iman. Surely, He is Allah the Almighty Who guides the misguided one.
After his reversion to Islam, the captor-mujahideen of the respected Warren Weinstein became his guardian brothers and started to call him “Chacha” (Urdu word for Uncle) with affection. He chose his Islamic name to be Ishaq. Uncle accepted Islam in the start of 2013 and from the first day of his Islam he started the blessed struggle to gain Islamic knowledge. Apart from his elderliness, Uncle proved himself to be a diligent student of the Islamic knowledge. Mujahideen in the Markaz (a living place of the mujahideen) considered him as their beloved and respected elder and felt honour in serving and taking care of him. Punctuality in prayers, fasting and perseverance in “Dhikr” and “Nawafil” was uncle’s especial attribute. Release of his oppressed Muslim sister, Aafia Siddiqui from the American captivity was his sincere wish. He also had a deep desire to revert his wife and daughter to Islam.
When Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad got martyred in an American Drone strike in January 2015, an amazing fragrance was coming out of uncle’s body spreading all over the area. Many people wept involuntarily after observing this spiritual spectrum.
We, the mujahideen are grieved due to the separation of our beloved uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad but on the same time it’s a matter of joyfulness for us that Allah took them out from the narrowness of false beliefs, gave them the vast of Islam, saved them from the worst failure and disappointment, and embraced them with everlasting success and happiness (by the will of Allah). This hope is also a matter of delight for us that our Allah will gather us with our uncle and Brother Muhammad in paradise (by the will of Allah).
In a narration of Musnad al Ahmad, it is stated that:
Abu Umama (may Allah be pleased with him) says that once The Prophet (peace be upon him) smiled, we asked: “O Prophet of Allah! (peace be upon him) why did you smile?” The Prophet said, “I wonder at those people who will be entered in the Paradise in chains.”
Narrated Abu Huraira (RA):
The Prophet said, “Allah wonders at those people who will enter Paradise in chains.”(Al-Bukhari)
Interpreters of a hadith write that this hadith is about those people who were captured by Muslims and then after observing Islam and Muslims closely they accepted Islam and become worthy of the Paradise.
We pray to Allah (swt) that the destiny of UncleIshaq and Brother Muhammad would be according to the above mentioned hadith.
At this point we also want to remember our brothers Muzammil, Shoaib and Ali (may Allah have mercy on them), the guards of Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad who loved them from the depths of their hearts. These brothers served for the comfort and pleasure of Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad, motivated them to learn about Islam with their Islamic conduct and then cooperated with them to learn Quran, Hadith and Arabic language. It was their mutual love and prayers for each other that Allah sent them towards the Paradise alongside Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad. May Allah accept their love and friendship and join us all under the shade of His throne in the hereafter.
{الأَخِلآَّءُ يَوْمَئِذٍ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ عَدُوٌّ إِلاَّ الْمُتَّقِينَ} القرآان
“Friends, on that day, will become enemies to one another, except the God-fearing.”
Here we want to declare that Mujahideen are well aware that the purpose of American network everywhere in Pakistan with the name of USAID and other American NGOs is to spread unbelief, and spread agents for their heinous intentions, likewise the officers of American Embassy in Pakistan are the agents of the American intelligence agency CIA and are linked with it in all matters. Uncle Ishaq exposed these foul activities of America in great detail and helped and guided mujahideen in various projects after reverting to Islam. May Allah bless our uncle with great rewards on such great service, Ameen.
Surely in the reversion to Islam of Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad, there are signs for the possessors of intellect. On one side there are Muslim captives in American prisons with whom the stories of worst cruelty and injustice in Guantanamo, Abu-Gharib, and with oppressed Aafia Siddiqui show the real face of the American system, Muslim captives in the prisons of America and its allies yearn to enter the fields of Jihad and oftenly even offer themselves for martyrdom operations after being released; an example of this is Abu Dujana Al-Khurasani (may Allah have mercy on him),on the other side there are the examples of Uncle Ishaq, Brother Muhammad and Sister Maryam (Yvonne Ridley), who became fond of Islam and mujahideen in their prison, turned against the ignorant religions and by accepting Islam joined the ranks of Muslims and then presented their lives on the same path. Certainly this is due to the truthfulness of Islam and greatness of Jihad.
We find it necessary to inform the friends and family of the martyrs that the first and the last reason for your grief and sufferings is the American leadership and their policies based on oppression, whose aim is to:
• Enslave the Muslims,
• Oppress the Muslims all over the world from Palestine to Afghanistan,
• And to spread corruption and disturbance in the Islamic societies.
For these reasons, these devils on one hand are bombing us endlessly from Yemen, Syria and Iraq to Afghanistan and Pakistan and on the other hand are deploying their secret agents in our lands in the illusion of “aid”. From the imprisonment of your relatives to their martyrdom murder in a drone attack, your leadership is responsible for all these incidents, who is expert in proving truth as a lie and lie as a truth. All praise is due to Allah who brought good for your relatives from all this evil by blessing them with Islam and entered them amongst His loved ones.
We request the families of Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad to study Islam, understand the call of mujahideen and accept the light of Islam instead of ignorance and darkness so that you may become worthy for the bounties of this world and the hereafter. This is the message of Uncle Ishaq (Warren Weinstein) for his family. It is the love of these martyrs for their families that compelled us to deliver there heartfelt message to you. The video of Uncle Ishaq regarding his acceptance of Islam will be released, by the will of Allah. May Allah make Uncle Ishaq and Brother Muhammad the mean of guidance for their families,Ameen.
وصلی اللہ تعالی علی خیر خلقہ محمد وآلہ وصحبہ أجمعین



Weinstein photographed allegedly praying as a revert to Islam

Following the release of the statement, Elaine Weinstein, widow of Warren was quoted in the New York Times as saying,

“we do not believe anything Al Qaeda is saying about Warren’s activities in captivity. As a captive, he was not free to make decisions on his own”

“Al Qaeda is a cowardly group, kidnapping old men who are helping others.”

Earlier this year the Guardian reported Elaine Weinstein criticizing the US government response to her husband’s kidnapping as “inconsistent and disappointing”, she said,

“we hope that my husband’s death and the others who have faced similar tragedies in recent months will finally prompt the US government to take its responsibilities seriously and establish a coordinated and consistent approach to supporting hostages and their families.”

Carol Anne Grayson is an independent writer/researcher on global health/human rights/WOT and is Executive Producer of the Oscar nominated, Incident in New Baghdad.  She is a Registered Mental Nurse with a Masters in Gender Culture and Development. Carol was awarded the ESRC, Michael Young Prize for Research 2009, and the COTT ‘Action = Life’ Human Rights Award’ for “upholding truth and justice”. She is also a survivor of US “collateral damage”.


About Carol Anne Grayson

Blogging for Humanity.... Campaigner/researcher global health/human rights/drones/WOT/insurgency Exec Producer of Oscar nominated documentary Incident in New Baghdad, currently filming on drones.
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