Helping Households Under Great Stress (HHUGS)
Helping Households Under Great Stress (HHUGS) is a pro-terror charity whose patrons include confessed terrorist Moazzam Begg. Begg runs CagePrisoners, a similar organisation with which HHUGS has cooperated, and has “admitted that he was a jihadist recruiter, that he attended three al-Qaeda terrorist training camps in Afghanistan, and that he was armed and prepared to fight for the Taliban and al-Qaeda against the US.” In 2014, Begg was charged with terrorism offences after returning from a trip to Syria.
Although HHUGS claims not to provide support to convicted terrorists, this is untrue: the HHUGS website has featured articles defending Munir Farooqi, who was “convicted of preparing terror acts, soliciting to murder and disseminating terrorist literature”; and Khaled al-Fawwaz, who – although not yet convicted – is on the UN sanctions list of persons associated with al-Qaeda and was extradited to the US in 2012 to stand trial pursuant to his 1998 indictment on 269 counts of murder.
At HHUGS’ annual dinner of 2011, Shakeel Begg gave the keynote address, in which he claimed that jihad is “the greatest of deeds.” Given that Begg had earlier encouraged students at Kingston University to wage jihad by “tak[ing] some money and go[ing] to Palestine [to] fight … the Zionists,” the word “jihad” in this context can be interpreted as “holy war” in its most literal sense.
HHUGS’ Facebook page currently promotes the poetry of Babar Ahmad, posted months after the author “admitted conspiracy and providing material to support to terrorism,” as well as the poetry of Talha Ahsan, who “pleaded guilty in a US court … to charges of providing material support for terrorists.”