London, UK, November 14 – Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain, a non-violent Islamic
political group, has today instructed lawyers to commence legal
proceedings against the BBC following the broadcast of defamatory
allegations on BBC Radio 4's PM programme, File on 4 programme and BBC
In a statement to the BBC the group said, "We are a non-violent organisation that has worked for over 10 years in Britain. For the avoidance of any doubt we do not advocate or otherwise promote the use of violence or any criminal activity against civilians in the UK or anywhere else in the world."
"We have never encouraged criminality in any shape or form and have spoken out against criminality. Part of our work is to persuade the youth to turn their back on the life of crime. The radicalisation of Muslims, particularly young Muslims, is the product of their anger at the government’s unjust and brutal war in Iraq. To suggest that Muslim organisations such as ours, rather than the government’s policies, have created anger within the Muslim community is disingenuous and irresponsible. It is organisations like ours that channel that anger into non-violent political activism in an attempt to repair the damage caused by government policies."
Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain wholly reserves the right to commence defamation proceedings or otherwise against other media outlets which repeat defamatory allegations about the organisation. Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain also states on the record that it will exhaust all legal avenues to prevent these politically motivated, fictitious allegations being used by the authorities to silence the organisation's peaceful political work.
Notes to Editors:
The full statement issued by Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain is available from www.hizb.org.uk
Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain has also issued a dossier of evidence that disproves the allegations made by the BBC about the organisation's activities in South London. The dossier, including letters from leading community figures, proves that Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain has been at the forefront of confronting criminality in the community.
An investigation by Newsnight in March 2004 found that Hizb ut-Tahrir activists were working in the community to tackle the problems of criminality and illicit drugs.