IslamismOctober 12 2022, 16:01 pm

Suspended UK Labour Councilor Shares Stage with British Labour MPs

 On 27 Sep­tem­ber 2022, Haringey bor­ough coun­cilor Ibrahim Ali shared a stage with British Labour MPs at a Liv­er­pool pan­el debate on Islam­o­pho­bia and the “future of Mus­lims” orga­nized by the Labour Mus­lim Net­work. The event was part of the 2022 UK Labour Party’s Annu­al Con­fer­ence in the city. Accord­ing to a tweet by LMN co-founder Samayya Afzal:

Last night we held a @LabourMuslims fringe on the future of Mus­lims in @UKLabour. A sober­ing dis­cus­sion on Islam­o­pho­bia, the treat­ment of @ApsanaBegumMP, & chal­lenges Mus­lims still face in the labour move­ment. It end­ed on a hope­ful note — we’re here, and we’re here to stay!

Read the tweet here.

In June 2022, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed that Ali had been sus­pend­ed from his par­ty over his past involve­ment in CAGE, a con­tro­ver­sial British Mus­lim advo­ca­cy group tied to the Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood (GMB) in the UK. Accord­ing to report­ing by the BBC, in 2015, Ibrahim Ali appeared to defend CAGE direc­tor Asim Qureshi’s descrip­tion of Islam­ic State mil­i­tant Mohammed Emwazi as a “beau­ti­ful young man.” Emwazi is believed to have behead­ed a num­ber of hostages between 2014 and 2015 while he was a mem­ber of an Islam­ic State ter­ror­ist cell.

Ibrahim Ali, pre­vi­ous­ly an elec­tion agent for Labour’s Shad­ow For­eign Sec­re­tary David Lam­my, was also Vice-Pres­i­dent for Stu­dent Affairs at the Fed­er­a­tion of Stu­dent Islam­ic Soci­eties (FOSIS), a nation­al umbrel­la orga­ni­za­tion rep­re­sent­ing Islam­ic soci­eties at uni­ver­si­ties through­out the UK and which has numer­ous ties to the GMB net­work in the UK.

Accord­ing to Samayya Afzal, the Liv­er­pool event fea­tured con­tri­bu­tions by sev­er­al oth­er Labour MPs, coun­cilors, and par­ty offi­cials, includ­ing Naz Shah, a Labour MP for Brad­ford West and the party’s Shad­ow Min­is­ter for Crime Reduc­tion. Shah also serves as Vice-Chair of the All-Par­ty Par­lia­ment Group on British Mus­lims (APPGBM), which pub­lished a work­ing def­i­n­i­tion of Islam­o­pho­bia in 2018 reject­ed by the British gov­ern­ment over con­cerns it under­mined efforts to tack­le extrem­ism. The APPGBM has received fund­ing from a char­i­ty affil­i­at­ed with the Mus­lim Coun­cil of Britain. Also con­tribut­ing to the event was Zarah Sul­tana, a Labour MP for Coven­try South who has a his­to­ry of mak­ing anti-Semit­ic state­ments on social media and wrote about her sup­port for “vio­lent resis­tance” by Pales­tini­ans. Pri­or GIOR report­ing on the Labour Mus­lim Net­work includes a May 2021 report on a “vir­tu­al iftar” event that fea­tured pro-Hamas & GMB leaders.

CAGE was found­ed in 2003 by British-Pak­istani activist Moaz­zam Begg as an advo­ca­cy body and plat­form for Mus­lims affect­ed by the US War on Ter­ror. Its lead­ers are known to have ties to the British GMB net­work. CAGE has a his­to­ry of cam­paign­ing against glob­al anti-ter­ror­ism efforts and mea­sures against Islamist rad­i­cal­iza­tion, claim­ing these mea­sures unfair­ly tar­get­ed Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ties and under­mined the rule of law. Accord­ing to British media, dur­ing a 2006 protest, CAGE Research Direc­tor Asim Qureshi advo­cat­ed sup­port­ing vio­lent Jihad over­seas in con­flict zones involv­ing Muslims.


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