British Pakistani Christian Association (BPCA) Chairman Wilson Chowdhry reacted to the conviction of radical Islamic Anjem Choudary earlier this week on charges of inciting to terrorism and supporting ISIS, saying:
‘It has taken too long, but it is a great day for anyone who is concerned with the rise of radical Islamicism in the UK. I hope that he and his fellow defendants are given the maximum allowable sentence. We understand that the only way the police were able to do this was using undercover operations and one particular obscure law, because Choudary used his solicitor’s training to stay just within the letter of the law whilst violating its spirit. We have a particular interest in this case because Anjem Choudary lives within about 500 metres of the BPCA office. However, he is not an isolated case, and there are problems with radical Islam in pretty much every area of the UK, and we should not allow a kind of totemic victory such as this to distract us from the serious challenges our society faces on this issue.’
Wilson Chowdhry said he was thinking in particular of the situation in Bradford where the convert Nissar Hussain and his family have suffered several waves of prolonged and extreme abuse in two different locations in the city over the last 15 years. Late last year this included a violent assault outside his home that was little short of attempted murder, as well as threats against the lives of his children, such as the family are wanting to
leave the city altogether.
Bradford was also the place from which taxi-driver Tanveer Ahmed (32) drove 200 miles to Glasgow to stab to death a Muslim he regarded as heretical whilst laughing all the while, according to eyewitness reports. Initial reports suggested Ahmed had killed the Ahmahdi Muslim Asad Shah (40) outside his newsagents for wishing Christians ‘Happy Easter’ on his Facebook page hours earlier, but he has since said that it was for ‘disrespecting the prophet’ or ‘claiming to be a prophet’. His declarations to that effect in court caused his supporters to echo his shout ‘There is just one prophet’.
Ahmahdi Muslims believe that their leader and his predecessors are the Messiah, whereas mainstream Muslims believe that the Islamic prophet was the last prophet and there can be no other after him, which is why most regard the Ahmahdi’s as heretics and not Muslims, and badly persecute them across most of the Muslim world, but particularly in Pakistan.
Wilson Chowdhry has alerted his local MP’s to his concerns that the conviction of Anjem Choudary may trigger a backlash. He is calling for an increase in security forces patrolling our streets and involved in counter terrorism espionage. He fears that the fundamentalist ideology requires proponents to strike terror within nations preventing true justice. He described how the Government of Pakistan fearing an eruption of violence,
terminated plans to amend the draconian blasphemy laws of Pakistan. This decision was made when 100,000 Muslim citizens held a sit in protest outside Government buildings in Islamabad, following the hanging of Mumtaz Qadri who murdered former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer. Mr Taseer was killed for calling for abrogation of the blasphemy laws of Pakistan and freedom for Asia Bibi, the only woman ever convicted of a blasphemy in Pakistan and a Christian. The protesters demanded the hanging of Asia Bibi and an end to the proposed reforms. Up until then reforms of the blasphemy laws had passed through parliament and were due to be ratified by the senate, but the extremist threat won out and thwarted a much needed legislative
Asia Bibi was due a supreme court appeal hearing between February and April but that has now been postponed. The Government has not yet acceded to the call for her death. However, by postponing her appeal her future looks bleak. BPCA has a petition calling for her freedom and we challenge people to put their name to it (click here)
Wilson later added:
‘The eradication of fundamentalism has to be a primary target for all society, especially during these times where myths built up by fanatical leaders like Anjem Choudhry have already had a chance to infect passionate Muslims. I don’t for one instance believe that all Muslims are filled with hatred for non-Muslims, but I fear that unless more is done to knit our communities together then polarization will consume our nation. Already our fractured communities have increasingly isolated themselves from one another creating schism. This has culminated in the rise of groups like the EDL, Britain First and Pegida – basically the National Front in another guise. I will be praying for peace in Britain, the attacks in France, Germany and many other nations remind us we are all vulnerable. Moreover I hope security forces in Britain stay on high alert following this sentence as the extremist emotional response to Mr Choudhry’s conviction will be to react with violence.”