Monday, February 14, 2011

Hate preacher expelled from Birmingham Islamic school featured on TV documentary


A BIRMINGHAM Islamic school at the centre of a documentary row will close on Tuesday amid safety fears.
You preach hate and violence ~ then your mindset is such that you now worry about your own safety. The message is ~ leave us alone ~ let us preach our hate [in private]  then you would not have reason to attack us. Completely turning the tables, on their own actions and posing as victim.

“Our concern now is for the safety of children and people coming to the mosque because we are worried that some people will get completely the wrong impression once they have watched this programme.

Teachers at the Darul Uloom Islamic High School, in Small Heath, have held meetings with police chiefs and fear that youngsters could be targeted by the far right.

The Dispatches documentary, Lessons in Hatred and Violence, is due to air on Channel 4 tonight and will show footage of a preacher making offensive remarks about Hindus and ranting: “Disbelievers are the worst creatures”.

But teachers at the school insist the undercover reporter captured an isolated incident where a 17-year-old senior student was talking to pupils.

The have provided a letter which shows that he was expelled for his views last August – five months before the school was made aware of the tapes by producers.

<--more-->A Birmingham faith leader last night backed the school’s record of teaching tolerance and MP John Hemming said he believed the documentary was irresponsible and had put schoolchildren at risk.

The school’s head of curriculum Mujahid Aziz said the decision had been to bring forward the school’s half-term by a week after meetings with police.

Pupils will today be told not to return to classes until the start of March.

“They filmed for six months and managed to collect a handful of comments which promote intolerance,” said Mr Aziz.

“We were aware of the views of this 17-year-old student and we dealt with him by exclusion straight away – before we even knew that we were being filmed.

“What people will see in that clip is completely contrary to what we teach at the school about harmony and awareness of different faiths.

“Our concern now is for the safety of children and people coming to the mosque because we are worried that some people will get completely the wrong impression once they have watched this programme.

“After meeting with the police, we are bringing the half-term forward and we have been advised that there should be plenty of staff around on Monday night as a precaution.”

The Dispatches documentary will show hidden camera footage from several religious schools, including the Darul Uloom. At the Markazi Jamia mosque in Keighley, west Yorkshire, a preacher was filmed hitting and kicking young boys at Koran reading classes.

Reporter Tazeen Ahmad claims the footage is evidence of a “hardline, intolerant and highly anti-social version of Islam” being taught in Britain’s independent Islamic schools.

Birmingham’s Darul Uloom is among an estimated 2,000 UK schools for Muslim pupils which opt out of education authority control but are still subjected to government inspections.

The 130-pupil academy on Coventry Road, which is connected to the Jami Masjid mosque, was given a glowing report in 2009 for its interfaith teachings.

Birmingham MP John Hemming (Lib Dem, Yardley) said Channel 4’s portrayal of the school was irresponsible.

“If Channel 4 thinks this is a school where racism and intolerance is accepted in any way, they have got their facts seriously wrong,” he said.

“They have already had hate mail and now they are having to close for the safety of their pupils.

“This kind of documentary is ideal fodder for the EDL.

“Channel 4 is putting the safety of children at risk by criticising a school which is doing its job properly.”

Mr Hemming was backed by Yann Lovelock, a Buddhist who sits on the executive board of Birmingham Interfaith Council.

He said: “They have gone out of their way to make other faiths feel welcome and I have been invited to the school several times to speak to pupils about Buddhism.

“As far as I can see, they do everything they can to promote tolerance and understanding and I am happy to work with them.”

Dispatches sparked controversy back in 2008 with its Undercover Mosque investigation into Birmingham’s Green Lane Masjid, where preachers were secretly filmed allegedly preaching hate against homosexuals and non-Muslims.

A spokesman for West Midlands Police said: “Limited details are known as to what the filming will show.

“We will be working with our partners in and monitoring any community tension which may arise as a result of the programme.”

A spokesman for Channel 4 said: “This investigation, which is clearly in the public interest, shows secret footage of numerous adults on different occasions teaching pupils as young as 11 years of age contempt for other religions and wider society.

“We stand by our investigation and think the programme speaks for itself.”

Sunday Mercury

1 comment:

gsw said...

As I understand it he is saying:

Since we would not hesitate to use violence if we did not like what you do; we assume that you will now use violence - so we will deny that we do this thing you do not like.