Soon-to-be-released terrorist suspect Abu Qatada has been advised by his new PR agent Max Clifford to start appearing on as many celebrity shows as he can in an attempt to improve his poor public image.
‘Abs, as he wants to be known from now on, has had a terrible time from the press over the last few years’ explained Clifford. ‘He’s been demonised – the public wants to deport him but that’s just because they don’t know the real Abs. He’s a lovely lad really, heart of gold. What he wants to do is bare his soul on Piers Morgan’s Life Stories (although personally I'd rather be tortured in a prison cell in Jordan than talk to Piers Morgan) then try to move on. If Kerry Katona can get a second chance, surely anyone can. The public even ended up liking Frankie Cocozza after he was on Big Brother for God’s sake.’
Clifford is already in the process of lining up a series of shows for Qatada to appear on. ‘We’re in advanced negotiations with I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ he revealed. ‘Abs is looking forward to eating testicles in the jungle, as long as they’re halal, although we’ll have to make sure he doesn’t try to coerce some of his weak-minded fellow celebs into suicide bombing Ant and Dec when the rations get low. We’re also trying to get him on Celebrity Big Brother, which he reckons he can win by persuading his rivals that there’ll be 70 virgins waiting for them on the outside if they blow themselves up before nominating him.’
As well as TV appearances, Clifford is hoping to move the focus of Qatada’s press coverage away from stories about extremist Islamic preaching and his close ties to Al-Qaeda. ‘I’m thinking maybe he could have an affair with Ryan Giggs or John Terry’ said Clifford. ‘I’d also like him to find out his phone was hacked whilst he was on the inside (by the News of the World rather than MI5) so he can make a late appearance as a witness at the Leveson Enquiry. After that maybe a perfume range, a fitness DVD, a stint as a Britain’s Got Talent judge and then his own talk-show. The sky’s the limit, as long as you’re not in a hijacked plane of course.’
Clifford is also reported to be representing another jailed radical Muslim cleric, Abu Hamza, who is apparently keen to appear on Celebrity Masterchef, Gok’s Fashion Fix and Hole in the Wall upon his release. Strictly Come Dancing has been ruled though out due to the danger that his hook could rip his partner’s shoulder-blades out during the American Smooth.