The Muslim Association of Britain has accused the U.K. government of a “witch hunt” in connection with a newspaper report indicating that Dr. Daud Abdullah, the Deputy Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), signed a statement calling for a “third Jihadist front” centred on Gaza. According to the MAB response:
The Observer on Sunday ran an inflammatory piece claiming Dr Daud Abdullah, Deputy Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) “One of the UK’s most influential Islamic leaders, who has helped counter extremism in the country’s mosques, is accused of advocating attacks on the Royal Navy if it tries to stop arms for Hamas being smuggled into Gaza.” Not only is it preposterous to allege that one of the foremost Muslim leaders of the international campaign for peace and justice could advocate violence, but to further it by saying he is “facing calls for his resignation” is completely unacceptable. The only calls of resignation appear to come from the government which is trying to medal in the structures and workings of legitimate and democratic grassroots organisations like the Muslim Council of Britain. We the undersigned attest to the irrefutable fact that Dr Daud Abdullah has been a leading voice condemning terrorism wherever it transpires, making him a hate figure within extremist circles; Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Dr Abdullah was democratically elected by the membership of MCB, with over 500 organisations and nobody besides the MCB electorate can oust him. It is unacceptable that the government would choose to undermine this democratic process based on media reports. The witch-hunt by the government against individuals and organisations which do not tow the government line is unacceptable. It is clear that these attacks on leading figures from the mainstream British Muslim community is nothing short of retribution for the incredible loss and humiliation suffered by Israel during its criminal attacks on Gaza. We believe the government is pursuing a draconian policy against Muslims and the case of Dr Daud Abdullah is just one of many. Our support is with Dr Abdullah and we will continue to support him as an elected and chosen leader within the MCB and wider afield.
The statement resulted from a recent conference in Istanbul and was first reported by the GMBDW based on a translation from Muslim World News. According to his bio, Dr. Abdullah is a specialist in Palestinian”resistance” who has been senior researcher at the Palestinian Return Centre, London. The Return Centere has many ties to the U.K. Muslim Brotherhood.
The MAB, a major part of the MCB which is dominated by Muslim Brotherhood groups. is itself a part of the U.K. Muslim Brotherhood and is headed by Dr. Ahmed Al-Rawi. In 2004, Dr. Al-Rawi was one of the signatories to a document also signed by many Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, and Hezbollah leaders which appeared to support terrorism in Iraq and Israel by calling for support for the “honorable resistance” in those countries:
Call upon our Islamic and Arab nations along with all the religious authorities and the liberation powers, wherever they maybe: to resist the occupation and its savage crimes in Iraq and Palestine. To offer our moral and material support to the honourable resistance, its prisoners and their families. To be patient, strong and steadfast until God is victorious and the land of Islam cleansed from the filth of occupation. And this is drawing near by the grace of Allah. 1
The Wall Street Journal has reported that in a 2005 interview, Dr. Al-Rawi endorsed suicide bombings in Iraq and Israel, saying Muslims “have the right to defend themselves.
(Note 1: al-Quds al-Arabi (London), 8/23/2004 – p. 4)