Muslim Students Link British Foreign Policy To London Bombings

LONDON – Ninety-five percent of Muslim students are unhappy with British foreign policy, particularly on Iraq, and 66 percent feel it contributed to the London bombings, an opinion poll released on Wednesday said. Half of respondents to the poll for the Federation of Student Islamic Societies said they had experienced Islamophobia, and nine out of 10 objected to the way Muslims were portrayed in the media. The figures were based on feedback from 250 students, with 500 responses expected by next week. Federation president Wakkas Khan said the results undermined Prime Minister Tony Blair’s assertion that the London bombings were unrelated to his decision to take Britain into the Iraq conflict. It is important now for Mr Blair to accept that foreign policy is a serious concern and to start to do something about it rather than being seen to brush it aside, he said. Fifty-six people were killed, including four apparent suicide bombers, when three Underground trains and a double-decker bus were targeted on July 7 in the worst terrorist attack ever on British soil. Three people have been charged with attempted murder, and a fourth is awaiting extradition from Italy, in connection with a failed attempt on July 21 to repeat the attack.

German State Plans Hijab

Female Muslim teachers in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia will be banned from wearing hijab at schools from next summer, according to a German press report. Officials in the State told Wednesday’s edition of the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung that the hijab ban would take effect from August 2006, Reuters reported. “Female and male teachers are not allowed to express any world views or any religious beliefs, which could disturb or endanger the peace at school,” North Rhine-Westphalia schools minister Barbara Sommer said. “That’s why we want to forbid (female) Muslim teachers at state schools from wearing headscarves.” State officials maintained that the decision would be probed with the Muslim groups in the state. They denied that the hijab ban was targeting religious beliefs of the Muslim minority. Germany’s constitution obliges the states to maintain strict religious neutrality but it does not enshrine a formal separation of church and state. Islam comes third in Germany after Protestant and Catholic Christianity. There are some 3.4 million Muslims in the country, including 220,000 in Berlin, and Turks make up an estimated two thirds of the Muslim minority. Controversy The hijab ban in schools has been a controversial issue in Germany for several years. The superior administrative court of Bremen ruled Monday, August 29, to ban a Muslim teacher from teaching in schools for her refusal to take off her hijab. Germany’s highest tribunal, the constitutional court, ruled in 2003 that Baden-Wuerttemberg was wrong to forbid a Muslim teacher from wearing hijab in the classroom. But it said Germany’s 16 regional states could issue new legislations to ban it if they believe hijab would influence children. The states of Hamburg, Mechlenburg-Vorpommern, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt and Thuringen still allow teachers to wear hijab. The state of Hessen also made amendments to its school laws, banning teachers from wearing any symbols of religious or political nature while allowing them a limited right to put on Christian or western symbols. In Bavaria, laws were enforced in 2004 banning teachers from wearing religious symbols that are not harmonious with Christian cultural values. The state of Brandenburg made the same amendments in 2003. Islam sees hijab as an obligatory code of dress, not a religious symbol displaying one’s affiliations – unlike the symbolic Christian crucifixes or Jewish Kappas. France spearheaded anti-hijab European countries with its lower house of parliament adopting the controversial bill on February 10 last year with an overwhelming majority. The text, put forward by President Jacques Chirac’s ruling center-right Union for a Popular Majority (UMP) party and supported by the left-wing opposition Socialists, was adopted by a vote of 494 to 36. Shortly afterwards, other European countries followed the French lead. The French ban, described by international rights watchdogs as amounting to religious discrimination, prompted demonstrations across Europe. International figures also stood behind the Muslim right, including London Mayor Ken Livingstone, who said Paris’s move is an anti-Muslim measure and accused Chirac plays a terribly, terribly dangerous game.

Muslims Stand Against Terror In Italy

By Ian Fisher CREMONA, Italy After the bombs in London in July, the first offer from the new Muslim leadership here was to form posses to keep an eye on possible militants. This city, gentle and refined, the home of Stradivarius, declined. Another idea that did not work was a possible service by both Muslims and Christians in the treasure of a cathedral here – which, prosecutors say, Muslim militants considered blowing up three years ago. But Sadiq el-Hassan, a leader at Cremona’s mosque, insisted that because the London bombings made future attacks in Europe a near certainty, something long overdue had to happen: Muslims, finally, needed to take a stand. “Our mistake is that we were quiet,” said Hassan, 40, a Tunisian who in dress and speech seems nearly Italian. “After all that happened after Sept. 11, we never came out and said, ‘These things are bad.’ But it’s not too late.” It may not be too late, but Muslim leaders here worry that time is nonetheless running out on Italy’s patience with them – and that worry has set off an unusual degree of self-criticism among Muslims like Hassan. It has not happened much in Europe, but Hassan is planning for the Muslims of Cremona to show publicly that they are as much against terrorism and violence as Italians are. In coming weeks, Muslims will march against extremism carried out in the name of Islam. “If the million Muslims who live in Italy don’t say anything, it means we are giving a green light to the terrorists,” he said. To optimists, like Mayor Gian Carlo Corada, the decision for the march is a welcome sign, the possible beginning of a model for how the uneasy relationship between Muslim immigrants and Europeans can be redefined. Muslims, he said, could begin aligning themselves more clearly against terrorism and for values that are more European; Europeans, in turn, would be more open to communication and true integration. Already for more than a decade, Cremona, a quiet city of 70,000 in the Po Valley, famous for violin making, has been an unlikely laboratory in Italy for relations with immigrants, nurturing both amity and extremism. And that history seems to show both the need for a new start to relations, and the difficulties of new beginnings. The area’s farms and factories – and the aging population of Italians, which has created a need for younger workers – have attracted a far higher percentage of immigrants here than to Italy as a whole. According to the mayor, about 20 percent of people in this area are immigrants compared with less than 5 percent for the whole of Italy. North Africans, mainly Muslims, began coming in the 1980s, and there are now some 10,000 around Cremona, Hassan said. The city’s political and religious authorities have largely been supportive of immigrants, and many immigrants have worked to integrate themselves and their families. City leaders praise an open dialogue with Muslims particularly. But given the rapidity of the change, it has been unsurprisingly imperfect on both sides. “Cremona is a racist city,” said Tamsir Ousmane, 44, from Senegal, who speaks a sackful of languages, including Italian, French, Russian and English, and runs a call center. “If I want to rent a house, I can’t. They won’t rent to me. Unfortunately, it is like this. But we are here. We work here. And we pay taxes.” Maria Anselmi, 64, sitting on a park bench downtown with five other older women, spoke of her fear of a terrorist attack and anxieties about immigrants in general. “In a while there will be more of them than of us,” she said. “They are going to squash us.” But relations with Muslims have been especially difficult. Nearly a dozen members of a former mosque were arrested in recent years, and two were convicted in July for belonging to an extremist cell plotting to carry out terror attacks. The plots uncovered here included bombing the subway in Milan and blowing up the cathedral here, which dates from 1107. “The city found itself at the heart of a series of investigations that suggested it was a crossroads of international terrorism,” said Andrea Gibelli, a parliamentarian for the Northern League party, which has advocated a hard line on immigration. “It was very uncomfortable.” The Northern League has been instrumental in closing down several mosques. While it has not moved against the new and more moderate mosque here, where Hassan is a leader, Gibelli is skeptical – and not only because of the specific terrorist threats here. Muslims, he said, have been reluctant to integrate into Italy. Mosques, he said, “are not places of prayer – they are for politics.” “They want to create areas where they can hide behind the protection of religious freedom, completely detached from the rest of the city,” Gibelli said. While the Northern League is on the far right, there seems to be a broader and growing opinion that Muslims, in fact, need to do more. One priest who is highly supportive of the Muslim community here conceded that in joint prayer groups against violence, perhaps only 10 percent of participants were Muslim. There has been talk for more than a year about a Muslim march against violence, but it has not yet happened. Hassan concedes the criticism is valid. “Integration is difficult,” he said, “because when you integrate, that is when you have identity crises. But we have to try.”

Muslims Worst Sufferers Of London Bombings

LONDON: Almost a third of Londoners overall but nearly two-thirds of Muslims suffered substantial stress following the 7 July bombings in the city, researchers say, reports BBC. Muslims may have suffered more because of fears of reprisals, they said. The British Medical Journal study also found that 32% of the 1,010 questioned were to reduce use of public transport. But researchers said the study – carried out before the 21 July attacks – showed the bombers had not created a city too stressed to get on with life. The research was carried out by London”s Kings and University Colleges and the Health Protection Agency. Fifty-two passengers were killed when four suicide bombers attacked three Tube trains and a bus on July 7. The interviews for the study took place from Monday 18 to Wednesday 20 July – before the failed bombings on London”s transport network on 21 July. Nearly one in three (31%) of participants reported having suffered substantial stress, and 32% reported they would reduce the amount they used the Tube, trains, buses, or go into central London. Some 46% of those surveyed said they did not feel safe travelling by Tube, and 33% did not feel safe in central London. People who had difficulty contacting others by mobile phone on the day of the attacks were more likely to have suffered from stress, as were those who feared a loved one may have been injured or killed. Overall, people with a strong religious conviction were more likely to report feelings of stress. Being white and having previous experience of atrocities – such as IRA bomb attacks in London – was associated with reduced stress. Only 12 participants (1%) felt that they needed professional help to deal with their emotions, whereas 71% had spoken to friends or relatives. The researchers said this suggested that most people were able to rely on lay support networks. Researcher Dr Neil Greenberg said: “It is quite a good thing that people should try to make sense of what happened by talking it through with those who understand them the best. “Our findings show that we are resilient, and suggest that if the aim of the bombers was to create a city full of people so stressed that they could not get on their lives then they certainly failed.” Dr Greenberg said Muslims might have been more vulnerable to stress because of concern about the consequences of the bombings, such as possible reprisals from those who blamed the Islamic community in general. Dr Monica Thompson, from the Trauma Stress Clinic, in London, agreed that most people seemed to have coped well with the bombings. But she said people who were either directly caught up in the attacks, or witnessed the results first hand were much more likely to suffer from stress. Dr Thompson”s clinic has so far received 26 referrals of patients exhibiting signs of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Britain Sets Ground Rules For Banning Foreign Extremists

By Alan Cowell LONDON Charles Clarke, the British home secretary, published a catalogue of terrorism-related offenses on Wednesday, setting the ground rules for Britain to ban or deport foreigners accused of fomenting hatred, violence and extremism. The list is directed primarily at firebrand Muslim clerics and scholars suspected by the government of inspiring violence among British Muslims, like those who carried out the London bombings in July. The announcement by Clarke, Britain’s most senior law enforcement official, followed a promise from the British prime minister, Tony Blair, earlier this month to take action, including closing mosques and barring clerics, to forestall future terrorist attacks. The measures announced Wednesday seemed slightly less sweeping than first promised by Blair. A Home Office statement said Clarke had decided not to include a catchall definition of unacceptable behavior as being “the expression of views that the government considers to be extreme and that conflict with the U.K.’s culture of tolerance.” In a statement, Clarke said the new regulations covered the expression of views which “foment, justify or glorify terrorist violence in furtherance of particular beliefs” or which “seek to provoke others to terrorist acts.” The list also banned actions to “foment other serious criminal activity or seek to provoke others to serious criminal acts” or to “foster hatred which might lead to inter-community violence” in Britain. The new regulations cover several means of expression “including writing, producing, publishing or distributing material; public speaking including preaching; running a Web site; or using a position of responsibility such as teacher, community or youth leader,” the statement said. It was not immediately known who was most likely to be affected by the measures. Clarke said a “database of individuals around the world who have demonstrated these unacceptable behaviors will be developed.” Since Blair threatened to expel foreign-born militants earlier this month, the government has rounded up 10 men it plans to deport, including Abu Qatada, a Jordanian citizen of Palestinian descent accused by European investigators of being a spiritual guide to Al Qaeda. Britain also barred Omar Bakri Mohammed, born in Syria, from returning to Britain from a visit to Lebanon. The government said it was negotiating with various nations, including Jordan, for guarantees that militants sent back to their own countries would not be tortured or abused. “Individuals who seek to create fear, distrust and division in order to stir up terrorist activity will not be tolerated by the government or by our communities,” Clarke said. By publishing the list, “I make it absolutely clear that these are unacceptable behaviors, and will be the grounds for deporting and excluding such individuals” from Britain. Some civil rights groups challenged the measures. The “announcement fails to answer the fundamental question; will the government’s deportation plans result in suspects being sent to countries with a known record of torture?,” said James Welch, the legal director of a civil rights group called Liberty. “What has always separated us from the terrorists is that we do not torture people or send them to be tortured – that is the standard we need to maintain.” But the regulations drew a broad welcome from the opposition Liberal Democrats because it included provisions for appeal. “It is good that the home secretary has seen sense on the deportation rules,” said Mark Oaten, the Liberal Democrat spokesman on home affairs. “We broadly welcome the use of powers to deport people, as long as the individuals involved have a right to appeal and the case for deportation is reasonable.” Clarke said the measures would not limit free speech. “These powers are not intended to stifle free speech or legitimate debate about religions or other issues,” he said. “Britain is rightly proud of its openness and diversity and we must not allow those driven by extremism of any sort to destroy that tradition.”

Talk Show Host Graham Fired By Wmal Over Islam Remarks

By Paul Farhi Washington Post Staff Writer Washington radio station WMAL-AM fired talk show host Michael Graham yesterday after he refused to soften his description of Islam as “a terrorist organization” on the air last month. Graham had been suspended without pay from his daily three-hour show since making his comments July 25. The station had conditioned his return to the midmorning shift on reading a station-approved statement in which Graham would have said that his anti-Muslim statements were “too broad” and that he sometimes uses “hyperbole” in the course of his program. WMAL also asked Graham to speak to the station’s advertisers and its employees about the controversy. But Graham refused both conditions, prompting the station to drop him. According to WMAL, Graham said “Islam is a terrorist organization” 23 times on his July 25 program. On the same show, he also said repeatedly that “moderate Muslims are those who only want to kill Jews” and that “the problem is not extremism. The problem is Islam.” The comments drew complaints and prompted an organized letter-writing campaign against WMAL and its advertisers by a Muslim group, the Council on American-Islam Relations (CAIR) of Washington. The protests led several advertisers to ask WMAL to stop airing their ads during Graham’s weekday show, although the station says it didn’t lose any advertisers amid the controversy. In a statement yesterday, Graham blamed CAIR for his firing and defended his comments: “As a fan of talk radio, I find it absolutely outrageous that pressure from a special interest group like CAIR can result in the abandonment of free speech and open discourse on a talk radio show.” Graham, in an interview last night, said he and the station had reached an agreement on terms of his return last week, but the station called back to withdraw. “It was a done deal,” he said. “They revoked it because, after further consideration, it didn’t contain an apology. And I will not apologize for something that is true.” Chris Berry, WMAL’s president and general manager, disputed Graham’s characterization, saying in an interview that “no one involved in this decision ever had any contact with anyone from CAIR.” Instead, he said, Graham was terminated because he violated station policy and disregarded “management direction” to redress it. Officials at WMAL, which is owned by the Walt Disney Co., had initially declined to take disciplinary action against Graham, defending his comments as part of the overheated rhetoric of talk radio. But that stance began to change as complaints about Graham’s remarks mounted. Graham, 43, is one of several conservative talk hosts featured on the station. WMAL (630 AM) also carries Rush Limbaugh’s and Sean Hannity’s nationally syndicated radio shows. Graham’s WMAL show is not syndicated. The station had hoped to work out an agreement that would return Graham to the air, Berry said, but it was evident by early yesterday that Graham would not agree to the station’s terms. He added in a statement: “Some of Michael’s statements about Islam went over the line — and this isn’t the first time that he has been reprimanded for insensitive language and comments. In this case, as previously, Michael’s on-air statements do not reflect the attitudes or opinions of station management. I asked Michael for an on-air acknowledgment that some of his remarks were overly broad, and inexplicably he refused.” In 1999, Graham was fired from a Charlotte station for saying that the killing of athletes was a “minor benefit” of the Columbine shootings. He apologized the next day. CAIR applauded WMAL’s decision. The organization had asked the station for a retraction or an apology, but “we didn’t get specific on what [Graham] should say,” said Rabiah Ahmed, a spokeswoman. “We were looking for an acknowledgment that his statements were anti-Muslim and hateful, and harmful to our community and our country’s image.” Berry said no permanent replacement for Graham has been chosen because the station until yesterday thought Graham would be returning to work. He said WMAL will try several hosts in Graham’s slot over the next few weeks. Graham has clashed with CAIR in the past. Last year, the group said comments he made on WMAL implicitly advocated violence against Muslims, and it cited him in a campaign called “Hate Hurts America.”

Analysis: New Anti-Terror Measures In Italy

By Roland Flamini WASHINGTON — Arab women in Italy are no longer allowed to wear the full-face veil — the burqa — because of a ban on face coverings as a security measure. This is one of a series of new regulations introduced in the aftermath of the July 7 London bombings as Italians become increasingly convinced their country is next on the terrorist hit list. Alarm bells rang when one of the men wanted in the July 21 failed bombings in the British capital — Hussain Osman aka Hamdi Issac — was captured in Italy where, it turned out, several members of his family also lived. In addition, the Italian internal security agency warned Monday Islamist fighters who had gone to Iraq to join the insurgency were beginning to trickle back to Europe bent on doing mischief, especially in Italy. The no-veil ban has offended the sensibilities of Italy’s 1 million Muslims; but it’s been a crime since Italy’s struggle against the Red Brigades terrorists almost 30 years ago to conceal the face to avoid being identified, but the fine has now been doubled. This week the Rome government introduced new security measures. Users of Internet centers and cafes throughout the country have to show proof of identity. Under the new rules, center operators must store electronically all messages until Dec. 30, 2007, and make the data on the sender and recipient available to the police on request. The actual texts of the messages will remain protected. This measure was first proposed to the European Union by British Prime Minister Tony Blair following 7/7, but some EU countries rejected them as an invasion of privacy. Public telephone centers are now required to demand proof of identity from callers, and to keep details of all calls. With Sept 11, 2001, in mind, when two hijacked planes crashed into the twin towers at New York’s World Trade Center, the Italians also introduced mandatory screening for flying school applicants. Mohamed Atta, believed to have been the leader of the 9/11 group, learned to fly, unchallenged, at a pilots’ school in Venice, Fla. The Italians are hoping to filter out would-be terrorists by requiring students to provide proof from the police where they live that they have no criminal record; and this is only to be issued after a nationwide security check. New regulations virtually limit possession and use of most types of detonators and high explosives exclusively to the Italian armed forces and the police, and imposes strict restrictions on their importation, export and transportation. The mining and engineering industries can acquire low-grade explosives with special permits. The main Italian cities are meanwhile putting in place security measures of their own. Rome has doubled security in its many museums and historic sites. Work has started on protective barriers surrounding the Colosseum as well as on installing security cameras. The use of monitoring devices is a significant step in a country that previously showed little enthusiasm for them. But the network of security cameras all over London played a significant part in identifying the suicide bombers in the July 7 terrorist attacks that claimed 56 lives, and the lesson is slowing sinking in elsewhere in Europe. On Friday, Turin announced it had scheduled a series of simulated terrorist attacks on a train station, a shopping mall and Turin International Airport.

U.S. Muslim Scholars’ Edict Denouncing Terrorism Stirs Debate

By RACHEL ZOLL As they issued an edict condemning religious extremism, American Muslims hoped to silence complaints from outsiders dating back to the Sept. 11 attacks that the community has done too little to confront terrorism. But as soon as the statement was released, sharp criticism came from another source — within the U.S. Muslim community itself. Several American Muslim academics now say the edict, or fatwa, was so broad it was meaningless, and should have denounced specific terrorist groups including al-Qaida. Critics also said the declaration seemed geared more toward improving the faith’s image rather than starting an honest discussion about Islamic teaching. “The bulk of the Islamic tradition as it exists does stand against these lunatic, savage attacks on civilians,” said Omid Safi, a Colgate University religion professor and chairman of the Progressive Muslim Union, an American reform group. “But I would be more inclined to say there are elements of extremism in many parts of our tradition. Rather than simply saying these are not a part of Islam, I would acknowledge that these trends are there and do away with them.” Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Washington-based civil rights group which endorsed the fatwa, said no specific groups were named because “it would have been a laundry list.” “I think you can safely regard anyone listed on the State Department list (of terrorist groups) as included,” Hooper said. That list includes the Islamic militant group Hamas, which many Palestinians believe is waging a legitimate fight against Israel. “It’s not likely that someone who is already considering some act of terrorism would be dissuaded by this, but you never know if you’re going to prevent someone from going on the ideological road that would lead them to this activity,” Hooper said. Muslims around the world have been under renewed pressure to denounce terrorism following July’s deadly bombings in Britain and Egypt, along with the drumbeat of insurgent attacks on civilians and coalition troops in Iraq. The U.S. fatwa, written by the Fiqh Council of North America, an advisory committee on Islamic law, said nothing in Islam justifies religious extremism or terrorism targeting civilians. The council further declared that Muslims were obligated to help law enforcement protect civilians anywhere from attacks. Fiqh Council chairman Muzammil Siddiqi said the edict applied even when a Muslim country has been taken over by a foreign power. In Britain, two groups of Muslim leaders separately denounced the July 7 London attacks, but one said suicide bombing could still be justified against an occupying power, while another said it could not. “Occupation is wrong, of course, but at the same time this is not the way,” Siddiqi said. But Abdullahi An-Na’im, who specializes in Islamic law and human rights at Emory University, said the American fatwa was misleading. He said the scholars could not say “in good faith” that Islamic law, called Shariah, required Muslims to assist an invader. “What is Shariah’s position on an invasion or occupation of a Muslim country by a non-Muslim country? Put bluntly in those terms, I don’t think that any credible scholar could say this is legitimate,” An-Na’im said. “If the same group of scholars were asked to issue a fatwa over the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq, which is the underlying thing, what would that fatwa be and how would Americans feel about it?” The debate is complicated by the fact that Islam has no ordained clergy or central authority, like a pope, who can hand down definitive teaching. Islamic leaders with conflicting views regularly claim they are authorized to issue the edicts. An-Na’im pointed out that Iranian Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued fatwas promoting violence against what he saw as Muslim oppressors; An-Na’im wondered why any Muslim would feel bound, then, to follow the American declaration denouncing it. Muqtedar Khan, a political scientist at the University of Delaware and author of American Muslims, said it appeared the main aim of the U.S. fatwa was protecting U.S. Muslim leaders and organizations from criticism. And the edict may have fallen short of even that goal, he said. Disagreement over the declaration was inevitable – American Islam is a diverse mix of millions of immigrants and U.S.-born converts. Also, there is no major centre of Islamic learning in the United States. Yet even critics acknowledged something constructive could develop from the fatwa, despite its shortcomings. Said Safi: “There should be a follow-up conversation about what you do with the medieval legacy of how jihad (struggle) is undertaken, rather than saying these things are never a part of Islam.”

Denmark Targets Extremist Media

By Thomas Buch-Andersen A radio station in Copenhagen has had its broadcasting licence taken away for three months after calling for the extermination of Muslims. In the controversial broadcast, Radio Holger presenter Kaj Wilhelmsen said: “There are only two possible reactions if you want to stop this bomb terrorism – either you expel all Muslims from Western Europe so they cannot plant bombs, or you exterminate the fanatical Muslims which would mean killing a substantial part of Muslim immigrants.” Following the London bombs on 7 July, at least three extremist websites have warned that Denmark could be the next target. The reason for such threats is the 500 Danish troops working alongside US and British troops in Iraq. Danish police have warned people to be more vigilant and have put more police officers on patrol. Police are particularly visible in the centre of the Danish capital, Copenhagen, and around the Metro train system. Internet Option On Tuesday, the Danish Radio Licence Commission ruled the programme in breach of the Broadcasting Act and decided to withdraw the station’s licence for three months. So, travel to help your brothers in Falluja and exterminate your rulers if they block your way. Hizb ut-Tahrir flyer But Kaj Wilhelmsen has vowed to fight on. He says he will continue to broadcast on the internet, for which no licence is required. “Local radio is only one type of media and we will use the media available,” he said. The radio presenter also said he would sue the members of the Radio Licence Commission for blocking freedom of speech. In a separate development, Copenhagen Police charged Kaj Wilhelmsen with breaking the anti-racism law which makes it illegal to incite hatred against groups on the basis of religion, race or sexual orientation. Henning Koch, a legal expert from Copenhagen University, told Danish Radio he believed Kaj Wilhelmsen was in serious breach of the anti-racism law and faces a possible prison sentence. ‘Exterminate Your Rulers’ Since the bomb attacks in London, there has been an increased focus on extremist groups in Denmark. Only last week, the spokesman for the Danish branch of Hizb ut-Tahrir, Fadi Abdullatif, was charged with calling for the killing of the Danish government. Danish Hizb ut-Tahrir members Hizb ut-Tahrir is banned in some neighbouring countries On a flyer distributed in Denmark, Hizb ut-Tahrir said: “So, travel to help your brothers in Falluja and exterminate your rulers if they block your way”. Danish Justice Minister Lene Espersen is looking to find a legal way to ban the organisation. Those kind of remarks “have no place in our society”, said Mrs Espersen in November. Hizb ut-Tahrir has already been banned in neighbouring Sweden and Germany. Copenhagen Police is also investigating another extremist group, according to Politiken newspaper. The paper says the group is linked to a Copenhagen mosque and its website provides links to an al-Qaeda recruiting video showing Osama bin Laden calling for the killing of non-Muslims and demonstrating how to build a bomb.

Denmark: Denmark Targets Extremist Media

By Thomas Buch-Andersen A radio station in Copenhagen has had its broadcasting licence taken away for three months after calling for the extermination of Muslims. In the controversial broadcast, Radio Holger presenter Kaj Wilhelmsen said: “There are only two possible reactions if you want to stop this bomb terrorism – either you expel all Muslims from Western Europe so they cannot plant bombs, or you exterminate the fanatical Muslims which would mean killing a substantial part of Muslim immigrants.” Following the London bombs on 7 July, at least three extremist websites have warned that Denmark could be the next target. The reason for such threats is the 500 Danish troops working alongside US and British troops in Iraq. Danish police have warned people to be more vigilant and have put more police officers on patrol. Police are particularly visible in the centre of the Danish capital, Copenhagen, and around the Metro train system. Internet Option On Tuesday, the Danish Radio Licence Commission ruled the programme in breach of the Broadcasting Act and decided to withdraw the station’s licence for three months. So, travel to help your brothers in Falluja and exterminate your rulers if they block your way. Hizb ut-Tahrir flyer But Kaj Wilhelmsen has vowed to fight on. He says he will continue to broadcast on the internet, for which no licence is required. “Local radio is only one type of media and we will use the media available,” he said. The radio presenter also said he would sue the members of the Radio Licence Commission for blocking freedom of speech. In a separate development, Copenhagen Police charged Kaj Wilhelmsen with breaking the anti-racism law which makes it illegal to incite hatred against groups on the basis of religion, race or sexual orientation. Henning Koch, a legal expert from Copenhagen University, told Danish Radio he believed Kaj Wilhelmsen was in serious breach of the anti-racism law and faces a possible prison sentence. ‘Exterminate Your Rulers’ Since the bomb attacks in London, there has been an increased focus on extremist groups in Denmark. Only last week, the spokesman for the Danish branch of Hizb ut-Tahrir, Fadi Abdullatif, was charged with calling for the killing of the Danish government. Danish Hizb ut-Tahrir members Hizb ut-Tahrir is banned in some neighbouring countries On a flyer distributed in Denmark, Hizb ut-Tahrir said: “So, travel to help your brothers in Falluja and exterminate your rulers if they block your way”. Danish Justice Minister Lene Espersen is looking to find a legal way to ban the organisation. Those kind of remarks “have no place in our society”, said Mrs Espersen in November. Hizb ut-Tahrir has already been banned in neighbouring Sweden and Germany. Copenhagen Police is also investigating another extremist group, according to Politiken newspaper. The paper says the group is linked to a Copenhagen mosque and its website provides links to an al-Qaeda recruiting video showing Osama bin Laden calling for the killing of non-Muslims and demonstrating how to build a bomb.