First it was the Canadians, now it’s the Brit’s turn
MARCH 26, 2009 – Last week jewishinfoNews reported that Canada’s Immigration Minister Jason Kenney made no apologies for ending funding to the Canadian Arab Federation. He said the organisation had expressed support for terror groups. In a speech to University of Toronto students, Kenney said federation president Khaled Mouamar believes Canada should regard Hamas and Hezbollah as legitimate organizations. Both Hamas and Hezbollah are on Canada’s list of groups associated with terrorism. It seems Mr. Kenny’s move to end funding may have come after the federation’s president, Khaled Mouamar allegedly called Mr. Kenney a “professional whore” over his support for Israel.
Not to be outdone, this week the British Government severed relations with the Britain’s leading Muslim organisation the Muslim Council of Britain saying a senior member is a supporter of Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist organisation.
Hazel Blears, the British Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, alleged Dr. Daud Abdullah was one of 90 Muslim leaders from around the world who signed a public declaration of support for Hamas.
A spokesperson for her department said: “We are concerned that the statement calls for direct support for acts of violence in the Middle East and beyond. We are also aware that a senior member of the MCB may have been a signatory to this statement. If it is proven that the individual concerned had been a signatory, we would expect the MCB to ask him to resign and to confirm its opposition to acts of violent extremism.”
Jonathan Wynne-Jones the religious affairs correspondent for The Sunday Telegraph put it this way:
Hazel Blears has received widespread condemnation from Muslims and left-wing commentators for her decision to suspend official links between the Government and the Muslim Council of Britain.
She has taken the action following the revelation that Daud Abdullah, deputy secretary general of the MCB, signed a public declaration in support of Hamas and military action.
The declaration also urges Muslims to attack foreign navies, which “claim to control the borders and prevent the smuggling of arms to Gaza”.
Considering that Gordon Brown offered Royal Navy resources for precisely this purpose, Abdullah’s support for the declaration is particularly controversial and provocative.
Blears gave the MCB the chance to deal with the matter internally by asking him to resign.
She was giving them the opportunity to make a clear statement that it is opposed to extremism.
It didn’t and now it finds its privileged position as the main Muslim body responsible for advising the Government is no more.
No real surprise here, one would have thought.
Yet not if you were to read the hysterical reactions coming from leading Muslims, along with the outraged of Islington.
“The government is not in a position to say who should and who should not be in a group,” says Rabia Malik, chair of The City Circle.
“It’s a very dangerous development,” says Salma Yaqoob, Birmingham respect councillor. . .
What are these people on?
I don’t remember the Government seizing prominent members of the MCB and subjecting them to brutal beatings.
In fact, it has merely asked for the MCB to distance itself from one individual who has been linked with extremism.
Far from being a dangerous development, it is encouraging to see the Government is prepared to act tough.
Blears has made clear that the Government is not willing to engage with groups that appear to condone extremism.
That is an entirely appropriate stand to take, particularly as it coincides with the publication of Contest 2, the latest counter-terrorism strategy, which aims to prevent the radicalisation of young Muslim men who many join the ranks of extremists.
As part of the Government’s attempts to tackle this it needs to find Muslims who it can trust and who are serious about providing an alternative ideological narrative to Britain’s young Muslims.
Those who are not prepared to commit fully to shun extremism and any perceived links with extremism should not have the ear of ministers.
And those spouting such drivel over Blears’s action should think a little longer before opening their mouths.
According to the Al Arabiya News Channel
The declaration supporting Gaza which Abdullah signed called for the liberation of Palestinians from the Israeli military occupation and affirmed their right to resist the occupation and referenced Hamas as a democratically elected movement by the people of Gaza.
“These principles are consistent with international law and members of the UN are obliged under the charter to assist people to attain their freedom,” said Abdullah, adding that the British government’s actions are not in line with international law.
“The problem with the British government is that it is assisting the occupier when it should assist the occupied,” said Abdullah.
(Photo credit: Flickr)