London UK, 17 February 2009 – Today’s Guardian newspaper report that the UK government is drafting plans that will effectively label core aspects of Islam, shared by all schools of Islamic jurisprudence, as ‘extremist’. These include the belief in the Caliphate and Shariah laws for Muslim lands; Jihad to resist occupation of Muslim land and defend against attacks by invaders; and the ruling of Islam on homosexuality. The government is yet to disclose sanctions for believing in these ideas.
Commenting on these reports, Taji Mustafa, Media representative of Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain said: "If fulfilled, these plans would be reminiscent of the approach used by the tyrannical regimes in Muslim countries who try to outlaw those aspects of Islam that would bring a just and accountable system that provides security for people there. In these countries, regimes have seen belief in these ideas grow despite the brutal methods the regimes use to prevent people adopting these Islamic ideas and such policies have merely heightened hatred and resentment of these regimes. The British government’s plans may not yet be as extreme as Stalin’s Soviet Union, where core religious ideas were labelled as against state values and banned, but they are certainly in the same direction as the policies of Senator McCarthy in the 1950’s where some political beliefs were deemed ‘un-American.’”
“’We are seeing an attempt by the State to nationalise political and social ideas. ‘British values’ – as defined by this government, and supported by many in the Conservative party, as well as certain right wing think tanks – are in fact very specific secular liberal values. As the totalitarian streak in secular liberals emerges, there are increasing numbers of people – who hold a deep religious conviction or socially conservative views – being alienated. However, these proposals which target the Muslim community, would be a significant step further, and would indicate that only one set of political and social views are acceptable in modern Britain. It would be the ultimate fulfilment of the failed philosophy that gave birth to the war on terror where hundreds of thousands have been killed to force – without success – these same secular liberal values on the world.”
“When we read of such plans, we ask the question, who are the real extremists in today’s world?”