Thursday, 28 May 2009

Greater Manchester Muslim-Jewish Forum

Asian News, Muslims and Jews pay respect at Auschwitz, 28 May 09 "Six members of the Greater Manchester Muslim Jewish Forum took a trip out to Poland and Auschwitz to discover more about Jewish history."

Abu Hamza

The Sun, Hamza sons face jail for car scam, 28 May 09 Luxury car scam

Dudley Mosque, £1.5m mosque may be backed, 27 May 09 "Owners of the Ghausia Mosque, Lye, may get permission to demolish their High Street building and replace it with a modern equivalent. They also want to build a new community hall. The existing mosque, hosting prayer meetings for up to 200, faces away from the High Street.

"Owners want permission to turn it around so the entrance faces the High Street. Dudley Council planning officers recommend the plan is approved on June 1."


Guardian, EastEnders: Muslim character to have gay love affair, 28 May 09

"The BBC consulted Dr Andrew Kam-Tuck Yip, associate professor and reader in the school of sociology and social policy at the University of Nottingham, who has led research into the area, and Adnan Ali, head of Al-Fatiha, an international organisation for gay Muslims."

I haven't watched EastEnders' for years, so have no idea what is going on, but expect some controversy on this in the coming weeks ...

EU-MIDIS, Data in Focus Report 2: Muslims, Muslims In Europe Face Substantial Discrimination, Especially At Work "In a survey of Muslims in 14 EU member states, the Agency for Fundamental Rights said one in three Muslims had faced discrimination, and 11 percent of those questioned said they had experienced a racially motivated crime."

Report details: EU-MIDIS, Data in Focus Report 2: Muslims

PDF Report: EU-MIDIS, Data in Focus Report 2: Muslims

This is a timely and interesting report.


Daily Star, Success of Bangladeshis in UK encouraging, 28 May 09 "Members of British delegation yesterday said the success of Bangladeshi origin community in the UK is much encouraging, especially the new generation have been playing a laudable role in a big way in the British society."

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

‘Two Plays for Gaza’

Saudi Gazette, Legendary London theater hosts ‘Two Plays for Gaza’ Review/background


Times Online, Trouble flares as Luton residents protest over Muslim extremists, 25 May 09 "Yesterday there were about 500 protesters, some carrying banners with slogans such as “No Sharia Law in the UK” and “Respect our Troops”. Several cars were damaged after a small group split off from the march. An Asian-owned business had its windows smashed. In Stuart Street in the town centre, police drew batons. Mounted police and officers in riot gear were used to try to control the mob and stones were thrown."

Thursday, 21 May 2009

'Manchester College of Professional Studies'

Times Online, Former pub became the centre of a web of bogus colleges, 21 May 09 "The Times has evidence that in 15 months from October 2006 they enrolled 1,143 foreign students, most Pakistanis, and sold bogus college qualifications to enable another 654 to extend their stay in the UK." Fascinating, extensive article about bogus educational institutions, focusing on the Pakistan market.

Friday, 15 May 2009

Geograph Mosque Search

I was reading Victor Keegan's article 'A short stroll around my hyperlocal' in the Guardian yesterday, and it got me thinking about Geograph.

You might recall that I was using Street Map recently to chart various mosques in the UK - a project that is still ongoing. Of course, another way of looking at mosques is via Geograph. I've looked at this before, but never in this context. A quick search came up with 199 images. Obviously I haven't looked at them all, but there are some fine photos on the site. It would make for a useful teaching resource, if used appropriately (don't get me started about online resources).

Here's my search results. If your local mosque is not there, why not add it. I hope that Geograph gets properly archived!

I also posted this in Virtually Islamic

Lincoln, Mosque misunderstanding sparks Facebook protest, May 14 2009, "Abdul Salam, spokesman for the Muslim Community in the Lichfield District, said people had misunderstood his calls for somewhere to pray, and said he was disappointed at the racist comments the idea had provoked.

"He insisted this week, that Muslims did not want to build a mosque next door to Lichfield Cathedral, but merely want somewhere they can go to pray."

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Planned attacks

Telegraph, Al-Qaeda suspects 'plotted attack on Britain' from behind bars, 12 May 09 "During wiretapped conversations the men discussed an attack on Charles De Gaulle airport outside Paris and spoke of the need to "strike at the British", Italian police said ...

" ... Police said the pair had for years lived in Belgium, where Bassam was an imam at an extremist Islamic centre and one of al-Qaeda's "spiritual guides", while Gendron, a computer expert, was the "media propaganda point man, via the internet, for the French-speaking community.""

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

BBC Religion

Telegraph, Controversial Muslim programme-maker to be head of BBC religion, 11 May 09 "Aaqil Ahmed will move to the corporation from Channel Four, where he upset Roman Catholic priests by commissioning documentaries that appeared to contain a pro-Islam bias."

Interesting appointment. Ahmed was also responsible for the Qur'an documentary, and the Christianity, A History series.

New book

Jon Cole and Benjamin Cole, Martyrdom: Radicalisation and Terrorist Violence among British Muslims (Pennant Books, 2009) Just seen details of this, but haven't got hold of a copy. I'd be interested in seeing any review. Interesting choice of publisher.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Dentist dresscode case

Daily Mail, Muslim dentist 'refused to treat female patients unless they wore Islamic dress', 8 May 09 "A Muslim dentist refused to treat patients unless they wore traditional Islamic dress, it was alleged today."

Survey: The Gallup Coexist Index 2009

Ruth Gledhill, Faith Central, Times Online, British Muslims have more faith in UK than Britons, study finds, 8 May 09 "The results of the survey, which showed that 77 per cent of British Muslims were loyal to Britain compared with 36 per cent of the general public, challenge a perception that the community is less patriotic than the country at large. It also recorded that the community had more confidence in British courts, elections, financial bodies and the media than the general public. The survey showed that more than eight out of ten thought that their fellow British Muslims were loyal to the country, but only 36 per cent of the general public did."

Here's the link to the PDF [Gallup Coexist Index 2009], which, needless to say, I haven't read yet. I think it would be a useful document to look at in due course, especially as I'm putting my sections of my Islam & Britian book together.

Also see The Coexist Foundation

Inevitably, the information can be interpreted in different ways:

Daily Mail, Just one in 10 British Muslims feel integrated into society, study claims, 8 May 09 "Dalia Mogahed of the Gallup Centre for Muslim Studies said: 'This shows that many of the assumptions about Muslims and integration couldn't be more wide of the mark. British Muslims want to be part of the wider community and to contribute to society.

"'However in many cases it is a harsh economic reality that holds them back and stops them from realising their full potential.'"

Stop and Search stopped?

Mail Online, Officers stripped of stop and search terror powers over fears of angering Muslims, 8 May 09 "Scotland Yard is scaling down its use of controversial powers which allow officers to stop and search people without reasonable grounds for suspicion.

"Stung by criticism that the practice has alienated ethnic minorities, the Metropolitan Police is changing its policy on when Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 can be employed."

Anjem Choudary

Daily Star, Rant Preacher Opens Jihad Summer School, 7 May 09 "RANTING preacher Anjem Choudary is planning to peddle his hate to teenagers at a “jihad” summer school.

"The vile extremist has appointed himself principal lecturer of a 20-week course in his twisted version of Islam." Their emphasis. MCB also comment.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

UK and South Asian Islam

Economist, A single space, 30 Apr 09 "Not just for security types and sociologists, but also for theologians, Britain and its ex-dominions in South Asia are virtually a single entity. Schools of Islam that emerged in India as a reaction to the British raj are now vying for influence in the north of England. The passions generated by the Bangladeshi variety of Islamism are as lively in London as they are in Dhaka. Anybody who hopes for stability and social peace in the Muslim parts of South Asia has to keep an eye on the Islamic scene in Britain. The reverse also applies. The flow of South Asian imams to Britain has recently slowed, but in an internet age there are other ways for ideas to travel."

Banned from Entry to UK

Daily Mail, Named and shamed: Talk show host, Neo-Nazis and Muslim preachers of hate among list of 16 banned from Britain, 5 May 09 "Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said she decided to make public the names of 16 people banned since October so others could better understand what sort of behaviour Britain was not prepared to tolerate."