Saturday – Thousands to Join National Muslim Unity Demonstration against Terror Laws
London, UK, December 9 – In an unprecedented show of unity, thousands of Muslims from across the UK will march from Parliament Square to Hyde Park tomorrow [Saturday 10th December 2005] to demonstrate against the oppressive anti-terror laws being introduced by the UK government. The demonstration, organised by the non-violent Islamic political group Hizb ut-Tahrir, is entitled "March for Iraq, Palestine, Kashmir, Chechnya Before they make it a crime".
Demonstrators will hear speeches from representatives and leaders of a diverse range of Muslim groups including Massoud Shadjareh [Islamic Human Rights Commission], Ihtisham Hibatullah [Muslim Association of Britain], Taji Mustafa [Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain], Ashfaq Ahmad [Father of Babar Ahmad], Dr Muhammad Naseem [Birmingham Central Mosque], Maulana Faiz al Aqtab Siddiqui [International Muslims Organisation], Imam Sulaiman Gani [Tooting Mosque], Jahangir Mohammed [Centre for Muslim Affairs], Tariq Mehmood [Tehrik Kashmir], Mohammed Omar [Ramadhan Foundation] and Abu Yusuf [Stop Political Terror]. The demonstration is also endorsed by Cage Prisoners, New Civilisation Foundation, Prisoners of the West, Crescent International, Fuad Nahdi and Shaikh Haitham Haddad.
Speakers will condemn the proposed draconian measures including the criminalising of support for Muslims suffering under oppressive occupation in Iraq, Palestine, Kashmir and Chechnya, the punitive proposal of closing mosques suspected of harbouring 'extremists', the extradition of Babar Ahmad to the USA, the proposed proscription of non-violent Islamic organisations and the silencing of legitimate political dissent.
Dr Imran Waheed, a media representative of Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain, said, "This demonstration will show that these anti-terror laws do not have the support of the Muslim community despite the claims of the government. Almost every leading Muslim organisation and personality has stated their opposition to these draconian measures. Even the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Home Office's own taskforce on extremism have stated their opposition to these measures, but the government seems set on ignoring them."
"We will never remain silent about oppression – whether at the hands of a tyrant dictator who boils his opponents alive or an occupying foreign army. We will continue to stand up for justice and call on all people of conscience to prevent the silencing of thought, the muzzling of criticism and the repression of dissent under the pretence of fighting terrorism."
Demonstrators will assemble in Parliament Square [Abingdon Street] at 12 p.m. on Saturday 10th December 2005 before marching to Hyde Park where there will be a number of speeches by prominent people opposed to the proposed anti-terror laws. The demonstration is expected to arrive at Hyde Park at 1.30 p.m. where representatives and leaders of Muslim groups and community organisations will deliver speeches.