European Jewish Congress
Islamist preacher who compared Jews to fleas to speak at event in UK government building
United Kingdom
Islamist preacher who compared Jews to fleas to speak at event in UK government building

An Islamic hate preacher who once cited a Nazi comparison of Jews to “fleas” has been given a platform to speak at a conference that will be held in a prominent British government building run by the department responsible for tackling extremism and encouraging integration.

Ebrahim Bham, a South African cleric who previously acted as an interpreter to the Taliban’s head legal advisor, will address the Palestine Expo at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre this weekend, despite Home Office officials warning Sajid Javid, the Communities Secretary, to cancel the event.

Last night a group of Conservative MPs and ex-servicemen called on the Prime Minister to intervene in order to prevent government buildings being used by “groups which oppose our values and ideals.” Mr Bham is due to speak at the conference tomorrow [SUN] afternoon having already attended events at a number of London mosques this week as part of a UK tour.

The Palestine Expo has been organised by the Friends of Al-Aqsa, whose chairman, Ismail Patel, once publicly denied that Hamas was a terrorist organisation.

In a letter written to the group on June 14, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) said Javid was minded to cancel the event. It cited “concerns that your organisation and those connected with it have expressed public support for a proscribed organisation, namely Hamas, and that you have supported events at which Hamas and Hizbillah – also proscribed – have been praised”.

Patel subsequently threatened to take the department to court and DCLG allowed the event to continue, “following careful consideration”.

Recordings of Bham’s sermons can be found on the website of South Africa’s Council of Muslim Theologians, of which he is secretary general.

In one he says: “Goebbel [sic] was a very famous minister of the Nazis, and he tried to justify the killing of the Jews. Now as far as we are concerned, we do not need to feel apologetic because it was not done by Muslims.

“The Muslims did not do it, but they had to suffer the consequences of the Holocaust. Because Europe, because of its guilt, had to shed its Jews. And they couldn’t put them in Europe, they put them in Palestine at the expense of the indigenous Palestinian Muslim people.”

Quoting Goebbels, he adds: “One day he said that ‘People tell me that Jews are human beings. Yes, I know they are human beings. Just as fleas are also animals. Just as fleas are also animals, they are also part of human beings like that.’

“Using that example, the psyche of the whole people [Jews] seems to be to mete out the very same treatment to others the way it was meted out toward them.”

South African intelligence documents claim that in 1997 Bham acted as an interpreter for Nizamudeen Shamzai, the then head legal counsel to the Taliban.

Writing in the Daily Telegraph, a group including four Conservatives MPs, Colonel Tim Collins, the Iraq War commander, and the chairman of the Campaign Against Antisemitism stated: “Whilst the government is rightly strong in its rhetoric, it must back this up by denying extremists of all kinds the platforms they require to divide our communities.

“We call on the Prime Minister to take all necessary steps to prevent Palestine Expo from taking place in UK taxpayer-owned buildings, and prevent the future use of such buildings … by groups which oppose our values and ideals.”

A DCLG spokesman said the QEII centre operates “at arm’s length from government” and “does not represent, endorse or support the views of any organisations hiring its event spaces.”

Any events must be “in line with fundamental British values.”

 Click here to read the full article in Daily Telegraph

Monday, July 10, 2017
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