The big story on most front pages this day was the fact that a white British Muslim convert pleaded guilty to charges of terrorism. He was the subject of a 2011 documentary made by his stepbrother and was said to have developed extremist views after he joined the Muslims Against Crusades group. He was arrested with two others before the London Olympics. The three men have all faced trials and will be sentenced sometime in April.
Conservative MP Mike Freer was threatened by members of Muslims Against Crusades while holding an advice surgery in a mosque in Finchley, north London, on Friday afternoon. Freer reported that a group of about 12 people forced their way inside the mosque, called him a “Jewish homosexual pig” (BBC) and screamed that someone who is gay was “not welcome in a house of Allah” (Express). Prior to the incident, Muslims Against Crusades had published a message on their website, making reference to Labour MP Stephen Timms, who was stabbed while holding a surgery in East London last year (as reported), and reminding any MP that their presence in Muslim areas was no longer welcome. <as the BBC reports, the message also urged MAC supporters to target Freer, Finchley and Golders Green MP and not a Jew himself, but member of the Conservative Friends of Israel, as he allegedly “had the blood of thousands of Muslims on his hands”. During the abuse in the mosque, Freer was escorted to a locked part of the building by members of staff, where they waited until assistance arrived. Freer had not been aware of the online announcements prior to the incident. It is assumed that he was targeted by the group, as he demanded that the Palestinian Sheikh Raed Salah be banned from the UK earlier this year. He now re-emphasized that he would continue to condemn all forms of religious intolerance and added that he wanted Home Secretary Theresa may to closely monitor the actions of Muslims Against Crusades.
Ministers in the UK are currently considering legal changes, according to which insulting speech or actions would no longer be a criminal offence. The move to consider changes to the law on “threatening, abusive or insulting” words in public, under section five of the Public Order Act 1986, was brought forward by civil liberty groups that consider restrictions on “insulting” speech to be unfair. The Daily Mail reports that religious groups “have also criticized the law because the police have used it to arrest harmless Christian protesters. The law that criminalizes insulting speech and actions was used last year to prosecute Emdadur Choudhury, a Muslim extremist and member of Muslims Against Crusades who burned two poppies during the two-minute silence on Remembrance Sunday last November, and five Muslims who shouted insults at a homecoming parade. Under the regulations of the proposal, these actions would not lead to criminal prosecutions.
About 50 Islamists, who want to establish Sharia law in the UK, participated in a protest march in Waltham Forest, carrying black flags and chanting slogans like “democracy is hypocrisy”, “Sharia for UK”, and “Secularism go to hell”. The march is a response to the anti-Muslim comments made by Anders Beivik, who killed 77 people in Norway on July 22nd. Amongst the protesters are members of Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) and the extremist group Waltham Forest Muslims (WFM).
Islamic extremists affiliated to the Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) group, which was set up in 2010, called on British Muslims to establish three independent states with sharia law within the UK. They named Bradford, Dewsbury and Tower Hamlets as “testbeds for blanket sharia law”, which would operate entirely outside British law, the Daily Mail reports. The Daily Mail also reports that the call is “likely to cause anger among moderate Muslims and community leaders in the areas concerned”. MAC’s call is part of their response to the government’s recent publication of the revised Prevent strategy to fight Islamic extremism. According to the Daily Mail, in addition to the introduction of sharia law, the MAC also called for an end to CCTV cameras in and around mosques, demanded “the release of all Muslim prisoners, a ban on Muslims joining the police or armed forces and a rejection of British democracy”.
Muslim extremists behind a YouTube rant posted eight days before a scuffle during a homecoming parade of British troops were revealed today. The five men, who use aliases and the group name Muslims Against Crusades, are believed to have taken the names of known terrorists and supporters.
They whipped up a mob of 40 protesters in Barking on Tuesday, and held placards reading “baby killers” and “murderers” as more than 200 soldiers from the Royal Anglian Regiment were welcomed home from Afghanistan.
Muslims Against Crusades have claimed responsibility for the protest and the YouTube clip that urged others to take part. The video’s speaker calls himself Abu Amanah. Abu Assadullah, who is believed to lead the group, shares the name of a leader involved with terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba. A second man claims to be Abu Faris, linked to the same terror network. Another man calls himself Abu Jandal, one of Osama Bin Laden’s bodyguards. A fourth man claims to be called Abu Abbas, a Palestinian jet hijacker.