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THE CIRCUS: HOW BRITISH INTELLIGENCE PRIMED BOTH SIDES OF THE TERROR WAR
#3
MUSLIM COMMUNITY REJECTS THE STATE’s CRIMINALISATION OF ISLAM AND CONDEMNS  MOVES TO SILENCE LEGITIMATE CRITIQUE AND DISSENT
http://www.hizb.org.uk/current-affairs/m...nd-dissent

This joint statement expresses a position with respect to the ongoing demonisation of Muslims in Britain, their values as well as prominent scholars, speakers and organisations.

We, the undersigned Imams, sheikhs, advocates, activists, community leaders, community organisations and student bodies of the Muslim community, make the following points in this regard:

1) We reject the exploitation of Muslim issues and the ‘terror threat’ for political capital, in particular in the run up to a general election. Exploiting public fears about security is as dishonourable as exploiting public fears about immigration. Both deflect attention from crises in the economy and health service, but are crude and divisive tactics, where the big parties inevitably try to outdo each other in their nastiness.

2) We deplore the continued public targeting of Muslims through endless ‘anti-terror’ laws. There have been around ten pieces of legislation since the year 2000, all giving huge powers to the state, which have fuelled a media hysteria even though in most cases no crime was committed. This has created a distressing and harmful backlash towards Muslims, especially women and children.

3) We reject the portrayal of Muslims and the Muslim community as a security threat. The latest Act of Parliament, the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act, threatens to create a ‘McCarthyite’ witch-hunt against Muslims, with nursery workers, schoolteachers and Universities expected to look out for signs of increased Islamic practice as signs of ‘radicalisation’. Such a narrative will only further damage social cohesion as it incites suspicion and ill feeling in the broader community.

4) The expedient use of undefined and politically charged words like ‘radicalisation’ and ‘extremism’ is unacceptable as it criminalises legitimate political discourse and criticism of the stance of successive governments towards Muslims domestically and abroad. We strongly oppose political proposals to further ‘tackle’ and ‘crack down’ on such dissenting voices in the Muslim community despite their disavowal of violence and never having supported terrorist acts.

5) Similarly, it is unacceptable to label as ‘extremist’ numerous normative Islamic opinions on a variety of issues, founded on the Quran and Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), implying there is a link between them and violence, using such labels as an excuse to silence speakers.

6) We affirm our commitment to robust political and ideological debate and discourse for the betterment of humanity at large. The attempts by the state to undermine this bring into question its commitment to its very own purported values and liberal freedoms.

7) We affirm our concern about peace and security for all. We, however, refuse to be lectured on peace-building and harmony by a government that plays divisive politics and uses fear to elicit uncertainty in the general public, whilst maintaining support for dictators across the Muslim world, who continue to brutalise and legitimate political opposition to their tyranny.

8) We affirm our intention to hold on to our beliefs and values, to speak out for what is right and against what is wrong based on our principles, whether that be on matters such as the securitisation of society, corporate hegemony, war and peace, economic exploitation, social and moral issues in society, nationalism and racism. Not to do so would be dangerous and leave our community unguided.

9) We call on all fair minded people in Britain – including politicians, journalists, academics, bloggers and others concerned about fairness for all – to continue to scrutinise the scare tactics, fear-mongering and machinations of politicians, which do not bode well for societal harmony and only increase the alienation felt and experienced by Britain’s Muslim community.

It is time that politicians stop diverting the attention of the British public away from its domestic crises and disastrous foreign policies by repeatedly playing the ‘Muslim’ or ‘national security’ card.

Signed:

Abdurraheem Green, iERA
Anjum Anwar, Teacher/Chair of Woman’s Voice
Arzu Merali, Islamic Human Rights Commission
Dr Abdul Wahid, Hizb ut-Tahrir, Britain
Dr Musharraf Hussain, CEO and Chief Imam, Karimia Institute
Dr Reza Pankhurst, Author and academic
Dr Saeed Al-Gadi, Presenter at Islam Channel
Dr Shahrul Hussain, Birmingham
Dr Uthman Lateef, Hittin Institute
Hodan Yusuf, Journalist
Ibrahim Hewitt, Leicester
Ibtihal Bsis, Barrister, Broadcaster, Hizb ut-Tahrir
Imam Abdul Wahhab, East London
Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh, Imam & Khatib, London
Imam Abdul Mateen, East London
Imam Aziz Ibraheem, Iman Trust Community Centre, St Helens
Imam Irfan Patel, Jamiah Masjid, Gillngham
Imam Shakeel Begg, Lewisham Islamic Centre
Jahangir Mohammed, Centre for Muslim Affairs
Lauren Booth, Journalist
Mahmud Choudhury – Secretary Poplar Shahjalal Masjid
Massoud Shadjareh, Islamic Human Rights Commission
Moazzam Begg, Director of Outreach for CAGE
Muhammad Mustaqeem Shah, Al Mustaqeem Centre, Bradford
Shaikh Abu Abdissalam, London
Shaikh Haitham Haddad, London
Shaikh Haitham Tamim, Chairman of the Utrujj Foundation
Shaikh Khaled Fekry, Imam, London
Shaikh Omer Hamdoon, Muslim Association of Britain
Shaikh Sulaiman Gani, South London
Shaikh Zuber Karim, Intelligence Finance Consultancy
Shaikh Tauqir Ishaq, CEO Hijaaz College
Ustadh Kamal Abu Zahra, Lecturer on Islamic studies, London
Yusuf Chambers – Freelance community activist
Yusuf Patel, SRE Islamic
Azad Ali, Muslim Safety Forum
Asghar Bukhari, Muslim Public Affairs Committee, UK
Roshan Muhammad Salih, Broadcaster and journalist
Ghulam Haydar, Director of Myriad Foundation
Shoaib Khalid Bhatti, Muslim Lobby, Scotland
Dr Daud Abdullah, British Muslim Initiave
Shaikh Chokri Majoli, Imam, London
Yvonne Ridley, Vice President European Muslim League
Muhammad Shafique, Ramadan Foundation, Rochdale
Hasan Alkatib, Journalist
Mazhar Khan, Manchester Muslim Forum
Saaqib Abu Ishaaq, Project Medinah, Rochdale
Omar Ali, Chair of Brighton and Hove Muslim Community
Sofia Ahmed, Activist & founder of Muslim Women Against Femen
Nalini Naidoo,  Newham Muslim Women’s Association
Irfan Hussain, Bradford Dawah Centre
Leyla Habibti,  humanitarian activist
Tasmin Nazeer, freelance journalist
Ali Anees, Eccles Mosque
Saeed Akhtar, Cheadle Mosque
Yousef Dar, Community Safety Forum, Manchester
Dr Shameel Islam-Zulfiqar, Humanitarian campaigner
Majid Freeman, Humanitarian aid worker, friend of Alan Henning
Laura Stuart, Humanitarian aid worker, journalist and activist
Fatima Barkatula, Scholar and Director of Seeds of Change
Salman Sayyid, Author and Academic
Shezana Hafiz, Humanitarian Activist
Abdus Samad, IQRA TV / TV Producer
Alomgir Ali, MDRF, London
Shamsuz zaman, CYCD Chairperson, Luton
Tahir Talati, Imam Zakariya Academy, London
Abdul Razaq, Principal Iqra Academy, Peterborough
Fahad Ansari, Human Rights Solicitor
Adullah al Andalusi, Muslim Debate Initiative
Yusuf Shabbir, Blackburn Muslim Association
Suhail Akubat, Imam, Masjid e Salaam, Preston
Bilal Toorawa, Imam, Blackburn
Councillor Salim Mulla, Blackburn
Mohammed Alsheikh Mousa Attari Alhijazy, Alhuda Prophetic Medical Centre, London
Haji Mohammed Walayat, Sunni Council of Mosques, Luton
Edris Seth, Political Activist, Bolton
Ali Ahmad, Imam, East London
Zahid Akhtar, Founder Documenting Oppression Against Muslims, Walsall
Shirajul Haque, Imam, London
Ismail Rawat, Preston Muslim Forum, Preston
Khaleel Ur Rahman, The Deen Project / Activist, Derby
Ilyas Abu Yusuf, Imam, Bolton
Yaseen Ahmedabadi, General Secretary, Nuneaton Muslim Society
Munir Aya, Volunteer, Zakaria Mosque, Bolton
Raheema Bux, Community Worker, Blackburn
Nasima Begum, Solicitor, Luton
Mustafa Mustafa, Youth Worker, South London
Amanpaul Dhaliwal, Isalmc21c.com, London
Khaleel Ur Rahman, The Deen Project / Activist, Derby
Tahir Alam, PHD Student, SOAS, London
Dr Ajmal Hussain, GP, Stoke on Trent
Hafiz Kasim Javed, Community Activist, Rochdale
Ahmed Desai, Imam, Bradford
Muhammad Hansrot, Imam, Croydon, London
Muhammad Rahman, Teacher, Ilford, London
Rizwan Ahmed, Imam, Sheffield
Abdul Rehman Saleem, Khateeb / Activist, London
Inamul Hussain Yusuf, Teacher, Bolton
Dr Suhel Ahmed, GP, Bolton
Nasar Khan, Quran Project Volunteer, Birmingham
Asad Zaman, Imam & Chair Inter-Mosque Sports Association, Cheadle
Dr Siema Iqbal, GP, Manchester
Professor Yasin Patel, Senior Professor and Academic, London
Mohammed Makeen Salloo, Imam, Walsall
Qasim Asad, Community Voice, Blackburn
Ibrahim Bismillah, Director of Darul Ihsan Academy, Bradford
Faisal Mahmood, President, UKIM Peterborough


Joint UK Muslim Statement
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