IslamismJanuary 18 2023, 10:41 am

Report on Muslim Civil Society Presented to British Parliament, Muslim Brotherhood in the UK Played a Large Role

An Islam­ic news por­tal is report­ing on a 15 Jan­u­ary 2023 event held at the British Par­lia­ment, mark­ing the pub­li­ca­tion of the 2023 British Mus­lim Civ­il Soci­ety Report (BMCSR). The report, with a sig­nif­i­cant role played by the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood in the UK, pur­ports to doc­u­ment the cur­rent state of British Mus­lim civ­il soci­ety and was backed by the All-Par­ty Par­lia­men­tary Group on British Mus­lims (APPGBM). Accord­ing to an arti­cle post­ed on Islam21c:

Jan­u­ary 16, 2023 An impor­tant new paper was pre­sent­ed in Par­lia­ment on Mon­day after­noon. Com­mis­sioned by Mer­cy Mis­sion UK and writ­ten by lead inves­ti­ga­tor and researcher Dr. Usaa­ma al-Aza­mi, the British Mus­lim Civ­il Soci­ety builds in part on the recent­ly released cen­sus data for Eng­land and Wales, which showed that Mus­lims now make up 6.5 per cent of the pop­u­la­tion. And to unleash the full poten­tial of the Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ty, the piece offers a set of rec­om­men­da­tions for pol­i­cy­mak­ers and oth­ers in posi­tions of influ­ence with­in civ­il society.

Read the rest here.

Accord­ing to its authors, the pur­pose of the report is to improve under­stand­ing of British Mus­lim civ­il soci­ety and empow­er it to con­tribute to a more “com­pas­sion­ate and unit­ed Britain.” Draw­ing from recent­ly released cen­sus data, the BMCSR ana­lyzes the cur­rent state of the Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion in Britain and high­lights the chal­lenges it faces.

The 46-page doc­u­ment calls for stronger part­ner­ships between the pub­lic, pri­vate, and third sec­tors to bet­ter respond to Mus­lim society’s needs. It also urges pol­i­cy­mak­ers to tack­le “struc­tur­al racism and Islam­o­pho­bia,” includ­ing by imple­ment­ing the APPGBM’s def­i­n­i­tion of Islam­o­pho­bia. In 2018, this def­i­n­i­tion was reject­ed by the British gov­ern­ment over con­cerns it under­mined efforts to tack­le extrem­ism. The report fur­ther crit­i­cizes the British government’s Pre­vent Strat­e­gy, part of a com­pre­hen­sive pol­i­cy frame­work aimed at stop­ping peo­ple from being drawn into ter­ror­ism, accus­ing it of con­tribut­ing to Islamophobia:

The char­i­ty sec­tor, along­side part­ners in nation­al and local pol­i­tics, need to acknowl­edge the dele­te­ri­ous psy­cho­log­i­cal impact of Islam­o­pho­bia, per­ceived by many young Mus­lims as embed­ded with­in poli­cies like Pre­vent, on young Mus­lims’ men­tal health and their prospects for edu­ca­tion­al and pro­fes­sion­al success.

The Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed in August 2022 on a study by three British extrem­ism experts high­light­ing the role that UK Mus­lim Broth­er­hood groups have played in dele­git­imiz­ing the British government’s Pre­vent Strategy,

The BMCSR authors also rec­om­mend that British Mus­lim civ­il soci­ety orga­ni­za­tions invest in think tanks and research insti­tutes that devel­op robust rela­tion­ships with law­mak­ers and pol­i­cy­mak­ers, both in local and in nation­al gov­ern­ment. They also rec­om­mend media lit­er­a­cy projects, adver­tis­ing those main­tained by the Mus­lim Coun­cil of Britain (MCB) and Mus­lim Engage­ment and Devel­op­ment (MEND), both close to the GMB in Britain.

The British Mus­lim Civ­il Soci­ety Report was com­mis­sioned by Mer­cy Mis­sion UK, a Mus­lim char­i­ty found­ed in Aus­tralia in 2006, and which describes its goals as research­ing, defin­ing, refin­ing, and incu­bat­ing inno­v­a­tive com­mu­ni­ty devel­op­ment projects. Mer­cy Mis­sion Spe­cial Advi­sor Sagheer Malik is a for­mer Head of Pre­mier and Retail Assets at the Al-Rayan Bank, for­mer­ly known as the Islam­ic Bank of Britain, which is known to have pro­vid­ed bank­ing ser­vices for GMB and Hamas sup­port orga­ni­za­tions. Mer­cy Mis­sion is also one of the cre­ators of the UK char­i­ty Nation­al Zakat Foun­da­tion, whose Chair­man, Sul­tan Choud­hury, is the for­mer Al-Rayan Bank CEO.

The BMCSR lead researcher is Oxford Uni­ver­si­ty Islam­ic Stud­ies Lec­tur­er Usaa­ma al-Aza­mi, a mem­ber of the Doha Research Cen­ter for Islam­ic Leg­is­la­tion and Ethics (CILE), for­mer­ly head­ed by GMB leader Tariq Ramadan. He is also a lec­tur­er at the Mark­field Insti­tute of High­er Edu­ca­tion in Leices­ter­shire, a cen­ter for the GMB, and has writ­ten for the Islamist pub­li­ca­tion Mid­dle East Eye. The BMCSR Direc­tor, Jehangir Malik, is the for­mer UK Direc­tor of GMB char­i­ty Islam­ic Relief.

The report’s advi­so­ry board also includes aca­d­e­mics and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of sev­er­al oth­er Mus­lim advo­ca­cy groups. Some of them are known to be tied to the GMB, including:

The BMCSR acknowl­edged con­tri­bu­tions made by the Aziz Foun­da­tion, a British grant-mak­ing body and schol­ar­ship orga­ni­za­tion whose past lead­er­ship was tied to the Euro­pean GMB net­work, includ­ing the Euro­pean Net­work Against Racism and the MCB. The Aziz Foun­da­tion has also pro­vid­ed fund­ing for the APPGBM. The BMCSR also received sup­port from the Islam­ic Foun­da­tion in Mark­field, close to the GMB and Jamaat-e-Isla­mi, Pakistan’s old­est and most influ­en­tial Islamist party.

The report’s fore­word was co-authored by APPGBM Vice-Chair and Labour MP Naz Shah and Rt Hon. Say­ee­da War­si (APPGBM Trea­sur­er, Con­ser­v­a­tive Par­ty), both with a his­to­ry of coop­er­at­ing with the GMB in the UK.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.