You are viewing blog items for August 2016.
posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Tuesday, 16 August 2016, 16:19
It has been a long time coming but finally Anjem Choudary, Britain's most prominent extremist cleric, is behind bars having been found guilty of supporting a terrorist organisation. A four week trial at the Old Bailey heard how he was a vocal and enthusiastic supporter of the Islamic State (IS) and an apologist for its brutal crimes.
Following IS’s announcement of its Islamic State in June 2014 and before his arrest in 2015, Choudary had emerged as one of the biggest cheerleaders for IS in the English-speaking world, pushing its message and announcing that people should support its self-declared Caliphate. At the same time, his followers were flocking to the Islamic State cause, at home and abroad.
Anjem Choudary became the go-to figure for TV outlets and newspaper journalists across the world, offering IS open and vocal support.
He welcomed IS’s creation and declared it “legitimate”.
In an interview with The Guardian he called IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi "the caliph of all Muslims and the prince of the believers”.
He said that “It is not true that people are being slaughtered” and that minorities were being well-treated under IS rule.
In 2015 a key al-Muhajiroun member and leading Choudary acolyte, Abu Rumaysah, who had relocated to the Islamic State in Syria, produced A Brief Guide to the Islamic State which echoed Choudary’s words, ignoring the brutal reality of IS and instead painting a picture of a land of “scrumptious” falafel sandwiches and fruit cocktails.
Responding to the British media outcry following the beheading of Alan Henning, who was in Syria on an aid mission, Choudary told the Daily Telegraph: “In the Quran it is not allowed for you to feel sorry for non-Muslims. I don't feel sorry for him…I don't know the real story, I only heard from the British Government and media.”
More provocatively, Choudary revelled in telling the media that he would love to move to the Islamic State – if only the authorities would let him.
“I’d go tomorrow. I’d love to bring my children up there,” he told the Sunday Mirror. And he told The Times: “I believe the world belongs to God and that one day, hopefully, the UK will be part of an Islamic State. Why shouldn’t I be free to travel to the Khalifah [caliphate] and see what life is like under the Sharia?”
In 2013 HOPE not hate produced a seminal report into Choudary’s al-Muhajiroun (ALM) network called Gateway to Terror, revealing that scores of ALM-linked men had headed to fight overseas from Choudary-linked or inspired groups, from both UK and overseas.
Altogether HOPE not hate estimates that well over 100 Britons with some connection to Choudary and the al-Muhajiroun network have gone to Syria to fight. Most were from London, but others originate from Luton, Crawley, Cardiff, Birmingham, Stoke-on-Trent, Leicester, Derby, Leeds, Halifax and Manchester.
Choudary was also at the centre of an international network of interconnected extremists groups, many with connections to terrorism and jihadism, ranging from Belgium, to Germany, Denmark, Norway, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and even Indonesia.
In the eight months following the formation of the IS, Choudary's international network was probably the single largest recruiter of Jihadist fighters from Europe.
Justice has been a long time coming. For far too long, Anjem Choudary has played a key role as a cheerleader for ISIS, and been allowed to demonise the Muslim community.
Although he was treated as a somewhat clown-like, go-to figure for the press as a rent-a-quote extremist, he clearly promoted the disgusting and divisive ideals of the Islamic State, while dozens of his supporters have been connected to terrorist plots, violence or heading overseas to fight in Syria, Iraq and other conflicts.
In the six months following the creation of the Islamic State, Choudary was its biggest cheerleader in the English speaking world and the network he helped create became the largest recruiter for IS in Europe.
Over the last 15 years he has influenced and inspired over 100 Britons who have carried out or attempted to carry out terrorist attacks at home and abroad.
Finally Choudary can now pay for his actions.
- Read more here http://www.hopenothate.org.uk/features/anjem-choudary/
Posted: 16 Aug 2016 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Nick Lowles | on: Friday, 12 August 2016, 18:49
Next week HOPE not hate is going to formally launch its #MoreInCommon weekend, which we are holding over the weekend of 3rd and 4th of September. There will be dozens of community events across the country, all designed to bring people together from different backgrounds to celebrate what they have in common.
Make new friends and get a free T-shirt
Some of the events we are organising are large and will attracts thousands of people but most, however, will be much smaller and more community-focused.
But before we go public, I wanted to give you a chance to get involved and organise a community picnic in your area.
The community picnic is simple. You simply choose a local park, communal area or building and invite the people who live in surrounding area. You can share food, chat and play some games. What better way to get to know your neighbours and meet people who live locally who you might not know.
To help make the event a success, we will provide you with a #MoreInCommon community picnic pack. This will include a step-by-step guide to holding a community picnic, picnic rug, HOPE not hate Frisbee, rounders set, badges, balloons and a few 'sharing' recipes donated by celebrity chefs.
We can even help you produce a local leaflet and poster to promote it your event.
Host a picnic in your area
Our free community picnic pack will also include suggestions about how to encourage conversation at the event and how to keep the connections going afterwards.
And what's better, if you organise a local picnic then we will give you a free #MoreInCommon T-shirt to wear on the day!
After a summer which has seen Britain seemingly more divided than ever, what better way to start healing our divisions than by bringing people together around food and games.
Let's not forget, stronger communities means more resilient communities.
Organise a community picnic in your area and lets make new friends
Posted: 12 Aug 2016 | There are 0 comments | make a comment/view comments
posted by: Elisabeth Pop | on: Tuesday, 2 August 2016, 13:17
Yesterday, HOPE not hate submitted our Right to Remain petition to No 10.
The British people had spoken. HOPE not hate’s own research, conducted by Populus, found that 84% of Conservative voters back the right to remain of EU nationals, as do 85% of Labour voters, 95% of Lib Dems and even 56% of UKIP voters. In less than a week over 25,000 HOPE not hate supporters added their name to a petition asking for this guaranteed status before Article 50 is triggered. In doing so, they added their voice to thousands of others and the whole migrants rights sector.
The petition was needed because, in an atmosphere of rising tension and hate crimes, the remarks of the former Prime Minister that there would be ‘no immediate changes’ to the right to remain of the 3 million nationals living in the UK and the 1.2 million Brits living abroad was less than reassuring. The new Prime Minister too seemed unwilling to ensure they will not be used as ‘bargaining chips’ in future negotiations, thus exacerbating real anxieties for millions who have had their lives put on hold.
The petition was also needed because this attitude brings into question our British values – tolerance, inclusivity, justice – and the type of country we want to be after Brexit.
We are talking about people who have already invested their hopes, dreams, taxes and skills to make Britain great. We cannot allow them to become hostages in any future negotiation with the European Union. While they did not have a voice in the referendum, clearly the vote was partly about them and their mere presence and welcome in a country they, too, call home.
By adopting this policy, Theresa May has a unique opportunity to put the UK in a strong moral position before negotiations start. It will also alleviate the anxieties of EU residents who do not know if they should invest in buying a house or starting a family, who have children born here but have no certainty of keeping their jobs, or who have started businesses and have created opportunities in their communities but now feel scared and are considering taking their skills to other countries where they will feel welcome.
It would also send a clear statement to the minority with extreme views, who now appear to believe they have a licence to attack and harass migrants and minorities alike, that the British public finds their views repugnant and unwanted in our society.
It now rests on Prime Minister Theresa May to unite British citizens and residents, to offer hope instead of holding hostages and, unequivocally, say NO to fear and hate, YES to a united Britain and a clear and undeniable YES to a guaranteed right to remain for our family members, our friends, our co-workers, our community members! We look forward to her reply which we’ll share with you all.
Posted: 2 Aug 2016 | There are 2 comments | make a comment/view comments