London, UK, November 11 2007 – Dr Abdul Wahid, chairman of Hizb ut-Tahrir’s UK executive committee addressed the 10th anniversary gathering of the Islamic Human Rights Commission.
In his speech, he talked about Islam’s unchanging and uncompromising standard of legal rights including the right to a fair trial, innocence until proven guilt, not to be arbitrarily detained, not to be tortured and for citizens not to be spyed upon – prohibitions which the Islamic Khilafah state can not manipulate or alter whatever the political considerations.
He contrasted this with Britain, America and other western states where post 9/11, "people are indefinitely detained without trial, citizens are constantly spied upon, and a parallel system of justice has emerged that has been exclusivly applied to Muslims , and where a Muslim arrested as a terrorist suspect is guilty till proved innocent."
He explained that "universal human rights" – were not actually a universal set of standards. He said they were a "western" view of rights, globalised by western governments after World War II. He outlined how dictators and democratic governments alike abandon principles they claim to uphold and champion. He said "these governments do not apply these standards consistently – whether it be upon themselves or their allies. Britain’s detention of prisoners at Long Lartin Prison, or the US detention in Guantanomo are always overlooked. They talk about Zimbabwe and Burma but we did not hear much about the Saudi regime’s record or that of General Pervez Musharraf."
He concluded by urging Muslims to "continue to speak up and stand against injustice and oppression despite the pressures on us to be silent or to compromise our Islamic principles".
Other speakers at the event included Moazzam Begg, Yvonne Ridley, Dr Daud Abdallah (MCB), and local MP George Galloway.