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October 06, 2000

Demonstrations after today's Friday prayers in various cities in Britain in protest against Israeli atrocities

British Muslims will be holding demonstrations throughout Britain after Jum'a (Friday) prayers in protest against Israeli atrocities, reports The Muslim News.

Mosques throughout the UK are being urged to tell their congregations this Friday, during Jum'a (Friday) prayers, to send protest letters to the Government condemning the massacres of Palestinian civilians and deploring the British Government's refusal to condemn the massacre by the Israeli security forces. They will also inform them to organise and participate in demonstrations in their respective cities.

British Muslim leaders and activists met on Wednesday night in central London and demanded a stronger action from the Prime Minister on the massacre of Palestinians, reports The Muslim News. Over a hundred Muslim organisations called for the Israeli Government to be tried for war crimes. The meeting condemned the massacre of Palestinian Muslims and expressed solidarity with the Palestinians.

The meeting was informed of a major rally which will take place on October 24 at Hyde Park Corner, where over 20,000 Muslims are expected to attend from different parts of the UK. Demonstrations will take place in 10 cities on October 21 in solidarity with Palestinian Muslims and in protest against Israeli atrocities.

A petition will be signed by Muslims throughout the UK and will be sent to the Prime Minister condemning Israeli atrocities and demanding stronger action by the British Government.

During the meeting the British media came under attack for their pro-Israeli biased reporting. "They use terms such as "cease fire", which implies two sides are fighting a war. In reality it is one-sided, Israelis using helicopter gunships, tanks, anti-tank missiles and heavy arms against the mostly unarmed Palestinian civilians," said Dr Zaki Badawi of the Imams and Mosques Council. He suggested that ambassadors from Muslim countries should be mobilised "to do something".

Muslim leaders also condemned the Government's mild response to the atrocities and the comment made by the Foreign Office Minister, Peter Hain that "We are also gravely concerned over recent terrorist violence", implying that the defensive action by the Palestinians was "terrorist violence".

The Muslim Council of Britain, Friends of Al Aqsa, Palestinian Return Centre and Muslim Association of Britain briefed the meeting of the activities they had and were already organising. A picket was held last week outside the Israeli Embassy in High Street Kensington and another one is being held opposite Downing Street today at 3 to 6 pm. They have produced a petition to be signed and sent to the Prime Minister. An MCB delegation met officials at the Foreign Office on Wednesday afternoon. They conveyed to the FO "the deep anger and horror of Britain's Muslim community at the ongoing vicious and murderous Israeli response to the Palestinian demonstrations".

The meeting also urged Muslims to give money to Interpal which was sending help to the victims of the Israeli atrocities.

The meeting nominated an 18-man committee to follow up and coordinate activities.

The meeting was organised by Sayyid Muhammad al-Mousawi, President of World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League. He said: "The Zionist Government and Jews are trying to destroy al-Aqsa Mosque and it is only a matter of time before they carry it out. We must protect the dignity of al-Aqsa and the lives of the Palestinians."

A picket will be held today after Jum'a prayers opposite Downing Street in protest against the British Government. Demonstrations will also be held in Glasgow, Manchester and other cities this afternoon.

For further information contact us on 020 7608 2822 or 077 68 241 325. Please acknowledge The Muslim News when using the press release

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