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    Green Lane Mosque responds to ‘extremists’ claims

    by Sunny on 18th December, 2009 at 5:44 PM    

    The Green Lane Mosque in Birmingham today sent out a press release in response to the Quilliam Foundation’s briefing yesterday.

    Green Lane Masjid refutes the allegation that it has invited speakers that are ‘fellow-travellers’ of Al-Qaeda, which could not be further from the truth. These speakers are academics who have specialised in Islamic sciences and are well respected in scholarly circles.

    It is grossly unjust to suggest that they belong to some fringe ideology rather than orthodox Islam. Furthermore they all are well known for their open criticisms of Al-Qaeda and its affiliates. Sheikh Faisal Al-Jassim for example is an author of a famous book criticising Al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups.

    Green Lane Masjid has a proud history of fighting terrorism and extremism over the last few decades – long before it became ‘fashionable’ to do so. A recent example is our two day seminar held on the 17th of July in which we specifically tackled issues related to extremism and terrorism. In this seminar speakers such as Sheikh Faisal Al-Jassim and others exposed the profound flaws in Al-Qaeda’s ideology and the political motives of other like minded groups.

    That may be true, but most of the complaints relate to comments made by the clerics against Jews. The response here does nothing to address that. The similarities between extremists clerics of all stripes is their unbending racism, sectarianism and hate-mongering.

    The press release says nothing about the main charges levelled against the clerics about their statements on Jews.

    One of the objectives of our institution (through events such as the forthcoming conference) is to fight the destructive ideology of Al-Qaeda and other similar groups, and to encourage British Muslims to become productive members of our society. The intention of this conference is to engage young British Muslims and educate them on the scholarly traditions of the academics who dedicated their lives to the study, preservation and implementation of the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him).

    Not answering the question.

    The Quilliam Foundation has absolutely no credibility within the British Muslim community and has no legitimacy or qualifications to speak on Islamic matters. It is regrettable that this supposedly independent “think-tank” is funded by hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayer’s money and is not accountable to the tax payer.

    Wait. Shall I list all the Muslim organisations funded by the taxpayers that are not accountable either? How about all the money given to the MCB over the years? This is a facile argument against QF since practically every big Muslim org has had government money one way or another.

    Green Lane Masjid has a legacy of working with inter-faith and non-faith communities of Birmingham and is proud of its relationship with these diverse organisations. Green Lane Masjid has always spoken vociferously against oppression, sectarianism and terrorism, and we will continue to do so. We believe passionately in joining hands with all who wish for the betterment of British society.

    I can’t see many Jewish / Sikh / Hindu groups wanting to work with a place of worship that invites over people who have said such clearly bigoted things.

            Post to del.icio.us

    Filed in: Islamists, Muslim, Terrorism

    14 Comments below   |   Add your own

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs
    1. “In Green Lane There Is A Sheikh Showing…” « Back Towards The Locus

      [...] [H/t]   [...]

    1. Sal — on 18th December, 2009 at 11:43 AM  

      Wonderful riposte! I can't believe Green Lane Mosque haven't even bothered to respond to any of these claims…

    2. Shaaz — on 18th December, 2009 at 12:09 PM  

      Here's the open letter to GLM from British Muslims for Secular Democracy:


    3. justice2010 — on 18th December, 2009 at 1:51 PM  

      Well someone is lying is it quilliam or is it the green lane mosque?

      GLM is correct on one point which is Quilliam have no credibility at all except with sunny of pickled politics who i think is their number 1 fan.

      Quilliam i hear are also trying to prevent free speech by using our tax money to hire expensive lawyers to sue craig murray ex ambassador for britan and well known human rights activist and his accusation that quilliam are a bunch of lying and cheating con artists!

    4. Sunny H — on 18th December, 2009 at 3:34 PM  

      I love random people who turn up trying to spread rubbish.

      Well someone is lying is it quilliam or is it the green lane mosque?

      Is reading comprehension a problem for you? Would you like me to help you? What does that say above about not responding to the racism against Jews by the Saudi clerics? Funny, you don't say anything about that - instead you're trying to sling mud.

    5. halima — on 18th December, 2009 at 7:02 PM  

      Is it possible for all mosques and other faith organisations to commit to anti-racism and anti-discriminatory values as part of their public mission statements? Maybe this is already the case, maybe not? Obviously this will be a voluntary action as these organisations won't be state-funded ( if state funded this would be an necessary requirement). I am sure many are already doing this, and it's not an implied criticism of faith-based organisations, but all organisations, private, public or otherwise, improve considerably from deeper transparency and accountability to the wider public - even beyond their primary constituents that happen to be religious worshipers. Faith-based organisations have a huge role to play in building bridges and social capital across communities, and getting such bodies to be part of the public sphere de-mystifies allegations, and challenges anti-discriminatory preaching when it takes place. I am not just thinking about mosques here, but also of other religious places such as churchs in some parts of the UK where quite a lot of confusion exists around superstition and black magic. My sense is that mosques on the whole don't preach hate propaganda, but such poison takes place outside of the religious spaces where individuals have long-standing hate and anger fermenting, and prey on impressionable minds.

    6. Fojee_Punjabi — on 19th December, 2009 at 2:12 AM  


      They've all been involved for years and every Joe Daki knows it.

      Hell, there are rumours bin Laden himself is actually holed up somewhere in the UK under a popular mosque and given that the Pakistani diaspora are having their visa claims scrutinised more intently because of widespread abuse, I wouldn't actually be surprised if he is here!

      Don't say I never told ya so…

    7. justice2010 — on 19th December, 2009 at 8:17 AM  

      Sunny H

      If truth hurts never mind, I find it hilarious you try to promote quilliam who defend Geert Wilders entry to britiain the anti muslim racist on the basis of freedom of speech, yet when they hear the word speaker and muslim in the same sentence they want freedom of speech banned for these people, don't be a hypocrite!

    8. Ibn Khaldun — on 19th December, 2009 at 8:41 AM  

      Since when was QF speaking on 'Islamic matters'. Being a racist bigot is not an 'Islamic matter' not does one need to be an expert in Islam to spot it. Yes GLM may not be promoting AQ style terrorism but it certainly is promoting racism and calling for violence against other religious communities. Geert Wilders for all his faults does not call for violence and that is where you draw the line. As for credibility, an independant political think tank by defintion does not seek or require public endorsement or Muslim endorsement since it seeking to challenge not pander.

    9. Stephen Gash — on 19th December, 2009 at 3:59 PM  

      Close down Green Lane mosque and turn it back into a swimming pool with non-Muslim swimming times only.

      No more mosques.

    10. lfc4life — on 20th December, 2009 at 10:23 AM  

      Ibn khaldun the quilliam leeches are not independent they are sponsored by good old whitehall evident by the fact that they was given a Million pounds plus from the british tax payer. Nobody gets blank cheques without a return, independent my ass!

    11. The Common Humanist — on 21st December, 2009 at 3:17 AM  

      I guess the Muslims who speak at and attend GLM don't consider rank anti semitism wrong and, indeed, part of Orthodox Islam (which will be news to quite alot of other, less frothing muslims). It is pretty damning they don't mention it.

      Great. More beardedwingnuttersofhate.

    12. Jazzman — on 23rd December, 2009 at 1:31 AM  

      Sunny, can you actually point out money received by MCB for its core-funding? Unlike QF, MCB carried out projects and received funding for that: http://www.mcb.org.uk/faith/index.php

      And that wasn't for the terrorism pump money that QF and other new bodies were in receipt of….

    13. onetouch — on 23rd December, 2009 at 2:38 PM  

      Green Lane Masjid issues a 2nd press release

      Press Release

      Date: 23rd December 2009

      Re: In the Footsteps of the Scholars – Winter Conference

      Further to our previous press release issued on 18th December 2009 (click here to read) in response to the allegations made by the Quilliam Foundation Saudi Extremism Continues to Influence British Muslims, Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre issues the following,

      As a responsible organisation Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre is fully aware of the responsibilities it has towards the diverse communities it serves. To this extent Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre has various policies and controls in place to ensure it fulfils its aims and objectives in a responsible manner and that it complies with the law including the Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006.

      Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre was alarmed at the serious nature of the allegations made by the Quilliam Foundation which insinuated that we are a divisive force in the community. As a result, Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre has conducted its own internal inquiry into the claims made by the Quilliam Foundation in its press release.

      As part of the inquiry, Sheikh Faisal Al-Jassim and Dr Abdul Aziz Al-Sadhan were contacted to seek clarification about the allegations levelled against them.Both speakers regret the way in which the Quilliam Foundation has chosen to handpick a few statements from hundreds of hours of lectures to portray them in a negative light.

      Sheikh Faisal Al-Jassim has clearly stated that the understanding of Jihad in Islam is one of the most misunderstood concepts in current times; especially by many Muslims. To clarify his position publicly on the subject, he has authored a book that has been translated into the English language, entitled Islam and the Sanctity of Life – An Analysis of Contemporary Deviant Ideologies, with a foreword by the respected British scholar Dr Suhaib Hasan, Chair of Tawhid Mosque Leyton, London. We understand that seventy thousand copies of this publication have been distributed free of charge.

      Dr Abdul Aziz Al-Sadhan has stated that his teachings are openly available on his website and in the many books he has authored, and the few statements that have been highlighted are not representative of him. Dr Al-Sadhan has also stated that he is a fierce opponent of terrorism in all its forms, irrespective of the perpetrators. As such he has made it clear that when he referred to ‘the Jews’, this reference was not to Jews in general, but to those elements that have shown hostility to Muslims and resorted to violence.

      Having met both speakers on previous occasions, it is very clear to us that these statements do not fairly reflect their views. The aforementioned are acutely aware of the problems terrorism and extremism present in the world today. They are passionate opponents of such dangerous ideologies - a point which the Quilliam Foundation has conveniently chosen to ignore.

      Neither of the speakers condone disseminating divisive and destructive message, nor do they consider it permissible to break the law of the land. In light of the above, Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre is satisfied with the clarification given by the invited speakers.

      Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre has always condemned incitement to terrorism, extremism, racism and intolerance. We ask others to join us in this struggle to free our society of such evils. At the same time we ask those who are unfamiliar with the ethos of Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre to communicate with us, before jumping on the bandwagon of those whose goal is to demonise the Muslim community and its institutions.

      Unfortunately, it appears that the Quilliam Foundation has set out with a pre-determined agenda to create mischief and portray us in a negative light, in order to foment divisions amid British Muslims along sectarian lines and generate mistrust amongst the wider public. We believe that the press release issued by the Quilliam Foundation will play into the hands of those who wish to exacerbate tensions within society, and portrays Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre in a defamatory and negative light.

      Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the support it has received from countless organisations, from within the Muslim and non-Muslim communities. We urge these organisations to publicly voice their objections where established mainstream Muslim institutions are targeted in such a manner.

      [End – 23rd December 2009]

      Notes to the editor:

      1. For our previous related press release dated 18th December 2009, please click here.

      2. For further information on our position on terrorism and extremism, please refer to our publication Islam – A Religion of Terror? of which 36,000 copies have been distributed to date. Click here to read.

      For further information, please contact;
      Green Lane Masjid and Community Centre
      20 Green Lane
      B9 5DB
      T: 0121 713 0080
      F: 0121 713 0081
      E: press@greenlanemasjid.org

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