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July 18, 2008
UK government now targeting Islam
If the British government is attempting to interfere in the Muslim community on matters of Islam by funding a board of theologians, it is being “wrong-headed” as such a panel would have no credibility, according to editor of The Muslim News, Ahmed J Versi.
“Other governments have tried to impose their views to control Islam and have failed. It has been counter-productive and divisive,” Versi said. “It will be perceived that the whole strategy of the UK Government on tackling extremism is to target not just extremists but Islam itself,” he said.
His warning comes as Communities Secretary Hazel Blears was announcing the Government’s latest package of measures as “Winning Hearts and Minds” of the Muslim community. The launch of “Preventing Violent Extremism: Next Steps for Communities” included funding a board of some 20 theologians, who have yet to be named, under the auspices of Oxford and Cambridge universities.
Speaking from the inter-faith conference in Madrid, he said that there was unanimous agreement among Jewish, Christian and Muslim delegates that religion does not breed extremism but there are a variety of complex issues that is the problem.
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