London, UK, December 24th – Prime Minister Tony Blair's proposed ban on the non-violent Islamic political party, Hizb ut-Tahrir has been shelved according to a report in today's Observer. The report says that legal advisors, and senior Police officers warned against a ban having seen no evidence to support such a move or that links Hizb ut-Tahrir with terrorism or any threat to national security.
Last month a BBC News report mentioned that a ban was intended to coincide with Prime Minister Tony Blair's visit to Pakistan's military dictator, General Musharraf. The Observer report also referred to the fact that Pakistan’s military dictator had been pushing for a ban.
Commenting on this latest report, Dr Imran Waheed, media representative of Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain, said: "It is clear to all that there has never been any legal or security basis for any ban on Hizb ut-Tahrir. This report only goes to confirm that the Prime Minister's proposal was made to stop our non-violent political work to replace western backed dictators in the Muslim world”.
''Hizb ut-Tahrir is a political party that is at the forefront of challenging tyranny and dictatorship in many of the places ruled over by what Blair has referred to as 'moderate Muslim regimes'. The places where Mr Blair has holidays are the same places where political dissent from the likes of Hizb ut-Tahrir is met with torture, imprisonment and murder”.
''It is neither extreme to want to see the end of dictatorship, nor to oppose the political destiny of the Muslim world being decided in Washington or London. Hizb ut-Tahrir works for the return of the Caliphate in the Muslim world – an Islamic system of government with an accountable leadership, chosen through the authority of the people, in which the rule of law would replace the tyranny that currently exists.”
''Since the proposed ban we have seen this government behave like the regimes in the Muslim world over the last fifty years. Where smears, lies and innuendo did not succeed, regimes resorted to banning our political work. The political objectives of this government – colluding with dictators – in trying to silence our group puts into context much of the misinformation, slander and fictitious allegations made about Hizb ut-Tahrir”.
''Blair tried to impose this ban by exploiting people's fears of terrorism. We need to see an end to the heightening and exploiting of security fears in order to play politics – whether that be petty party politics in Westminster or matters of international concern.''