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Iranian-tied UK Center Receives Government COVID19 Funding

January 6th, 2022 16:02

UK media report­ed last Novem­ber that an Iran­ian-tied Cen­ter in the UK has received more than £100,000 by the British government’s job reten­tion scheme. Accord­ing to a report in TheTimes:

Novem­ber 4, 2021 Fig­ures lodged with Com­pa­nies House last month show that the Islam­ic Cen­tre of Eng­land received £109,476 from the coro­n­avirus job reten­tion scheme, as the gov­ern­ment fur­lough grants were offi­cial­ly titled, despite long-run­ning dis­putes with Tehran. The cen­tre is a mosque and cul­tur­al office in a for­mer cin­e­ma and bin­go hall in Mai­da Vale, west Lon­don. It is a major cen­tre for Shia Mus­lim wor­ship, edu­ca­tion and out­reach. It also serves as an office for Aya­tol­lah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, who has appoint­ed its direc­tor, Seyed Hashem Moosavi, a mid-rank­ing cleric.

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Found­ed in Decem­ber 1995, the Islam­ic Cen­tre of Eng­land (ICEL) is part of the Iran­ian influ­ence net­work in the UK. The Cen­tre was head­ed until 2020 by Huj­jat Al-Islam Moham­mad Ali Shoma­li, who in 2016 received a let­ter of appre­ci­a­tion from the Office of Grand Aya­tol­lah Sayyed Ali Khamenei, in which he was titled The Respect­ed Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of Grand Aya­tol­lah Khamenei. Lead­ing fig­ures con­nect­ed to ICEL par­tic­i­pate in pro-Iran­ian events such as the annu­al Inter­na­tion­al Quds Day.