Converts from Islam call out Zaheer Hussain on his carefully phrased apology. Profanity-laced threats directed at apostates via a social media video caused great hurt yet in his follow-up he did not apologise to his actual victims! The targets of hate fear an apostasy backlash in the current environment of impunity.
Apostacy-related hate crimes must be qualified – the threat is real!
To sign our petition STOP APOSTASY ABUSE IN THE UK (CLICK HERE)
Two prominent converts from Islam to Christianity have asked for Zaheer Hussain the man implicated in a profanity-filled rant against Christians who have quit Islam, to be prosecuted under the strictest measures available under existing hate-crime laws.
Both men feel that a sense of impunity has begun to fester amongst radical Islamic elements in the UK intent on dividing communities based on hard religious lines and that this had led to bolder campaigns designed to instil fear into those who might contemplate quitting Islam, while espousing violence against apostates.
Preston Taxi driver Mr Z. Hussain called for the rape of quitters of Islam during a video shared prior to Christmas after he was offended by a former Muslim who shared a video of himself being baptised.
Baptism is public profession of faith is part of the practice of the Christian faith, and this naturally makes them a target for apostasy-hatred. If a Muslim suddenly decides they do not believe in God at all they also are considered apostate. (Click here) to see the fear and alarm expressed by ex-Muslims in the Preston area.
Although Lancashire Constabulary police officers arrested Mr Hussain he awaits being charged and is on bail while he awaits a bail hearing on Wednesday (16th January 2019).
In his so-called apology video Zaheer Hussain clearly references that he was reacting to a video he saw on social media claiming that he had “got the wrong context” about it. That context was according to his own witness in his tirade that a Muslim had converted to Christianity.
Nothing about becoming an apostate to Islam warrants the rape threats he uttered.
He also makes what very much seems like a false claim that he had not posted the video to social media, however he can be heard in the video encouraging his friend to post his rant, and admits using Whats App to share the video.
No matter what a person leaving Islam believes there should be no reason to remain quiet about their views. However there is a significant reason – this might be the only way for them to stay safe.
No British citizen should be afraid to speak about what they believe. This is not a situation should be tolerated, when there is enough evidence to show there is reasonable and demonstrable fear to report crimes of this nature.
One convert named Fiaz Muhammed described how three of his friends who also converted from Islam, nearly lost their lives due to the persecution they faced her in the UK by a highly radicalised Muslim community.
He stated that it is easier for radical Muslims like this to apologise to Christians to deflect from the fact that they cannot do so for apostates who are simply anathema to them.
Nissar Hussain is also an apostate who fled Bradford after being tipped off by police that he needed to evacuate his home due to a planned hit on his life. He and his family did so under armed guard of 16 police officers assigned to secure his departure from the area. His four car Police entourage can be viwed on this ITV footage (click here)
For Nissar it all started 17 years ago when he shared his conversion with his childhood friend. Disclosing that he had turned to Christ made him enemy number one in the Pakistani community in which he lived, a reality that would haunt him and his family for years.
Nissar Hussain who fled Bradford because of persecution he experienced after leaving Islam
See video of the the vile rant in the embedded video or click (here)
Following the brutal lecture on what he would do to Muslims becoming Christians there were citizen complaints about the vicious diatribe.
The police later arrested Mr Z. Hussain for “suspicion of religiously aggravated harassment” and bail has been posted until 16th of January, despite the seriousness of the threat made to any converts from Islam in the UK.
British Pakistani Christian Association, emailed Preston Council on 30th December 2018, demanding the revocation of Mr Z. Hussain’s Taxi licence based on the danger this man is to society with such firmly held hatred for kaffir (non-Muslims).
A response came back on 2 January 2019 from Mike Thorpe the Licensing Manager that stated:
“I confirm receipt of the email you sent to the Council on 30 December 2018 and write to inform you that the licensed hackney carriage driver concerned is currently the subject of a police investigation to which the Council are co-operating with.”
Mike Thorpe further said:
“In addition the Council has decided to review the driver’s hackney carriage driver licence and a hearing will take place on 9 January 2019.”
Mr Z. Hussain’s taxi license is suspended until a decision is made by the review committee but this is only as is required by existing protocol.
BPCA responded to Licensing Manager Mike Thorpe underscoring the points brought up by Mr Fiaz and Mr Nissar.
Therefore we also let him know about the concerns we have been fielding from the the public about the driver of the vehicle, who heartily laughed along.
In his eager participation he also recklessly took his hands off the steering wheel to wave his shoe menacingly for emphasis, when Mr Hussian – speaking in Urdu – threatened to further beat Christian converts with shoes.
In another statement, a Preston City Council spokesperson said:
“During the course of the hearing, the driver agreed to hand-in their Hackney Carriage driver’s licence by the close of business today, and has already done so.
“This will be in effect until the completion of the related police investigation and any subsequent legal processes.”
The spokesman continued:
“The driver will be unable to drive a Hackney Carriage in Preston until reappearing before the Taxi and Miscellaneous Committee for a full licence review.
Tarek Fateh, journalist, and Islamic scholar also expressed his support for BPCA’s efforts against apostasy-hatred in a Whats App message after viewing the video made by Zaheer Hussain. He said:
“There should be no place in Britain for such anti-Christian hatred by Pakistani Muslims. The lax attitude of British authorities towards Islamic radicals is a threat to British society, which included Muslims who have fled Islamic world to escape the tyranny of Islamist and jihadis.”
The BPCA Report ‘Hate Crimes in the UK against Ex-Muslims’ submitted to the Home Affairs Committee in April 2017 contains evidence of serious human rights abuses carried out with impunity here in the UK. Read copy (here)
The UN Human Rights Committee has made it clear that states have an obligation to protect their citizens against infringement of these rights by “private persons or entities” as well as by the state’s own agents.
The Committee seemed to be focusing on other aspects of hate crime and believes that the BPCA report does not have enough studies, but surely they must not ignore harassment, intimidation and persecution of ex-Muslims.
BPCA plans to renew contact with the Committee, which is still receiving written submissions for a revised enquiry and to call for its members to more thoroughly investigate anti-apostasy hate crime.
Responses to some Freedom of Information requests from selected Police Forces suggest that reporting of anti-apostasy hate crime to the police is negligible.
The Committee believes that our sample was not adequate for them to consider a change of law, but the reasons for the small sample and very clear from the testimony.
Better reporting of hate crimes against apostates may indeed need to improve, but if there are no efforts taken to ensure this is crime is measured then it is neglecting justice to say the numbers are worth looking at.
Even our small sample demonstrates the risks apostates take leaving Islam. The fact is that these instances are not reported because they are not taken usually by the authorities.
When actions such as this hate-motivated tirade by Zaheer Hussain publicised without shame in a deliberate attempt to intimidate people from leaving Islam and mocking their chosen faith are normal practice. His desire to harm apostates was clearly articulated and must be taken seriously.
Mr Z. Hussain and his friend driving were not unaware of the fearsome bullying that they were engaged in. These threats were not an accident, but the result of his sincerely held beliefs. BPCA is asking that he be prosecuted according to the fullest extent that the hate crime legislation can be implemented.
The authorities ignoring these aggressive hateful behaviours directed cause many others act to act with impunity and has emboldened radical views like these threats reveal.
Then in circular fashion the authorities say there is no problem because they have not employed the method for which to statistically accounted for the crime.
Pakistan is on Open Doors World Watch List for Persecution against Christians at 99.8% this year – number one for violence out of all countries rated as extreme – and it has been so for the past number of years.
This extreme level of violence against the Christian minority in Pakistan is normative, but especially against those turning away from Islam. This extends to diaspora communities.
It behooves the Committee to mitigate the proven risks of reporting so that evidence can be gathered of the need for the measures recommended in your report.
Possible measures to improve reporting could include the following:
On the existing ‘True Vision’ online reporting facility, which allows victims to opt out of reporting to the Police,
1 a question could be added such as, “Do you perceive the incident to be motivated by hatred because you have (or were believed to have) changed or given up your previous religion? If so, please explain why”;
Police recorded crime data, collected by the Home Office, includes flags for perceived religion/belief of the victims of religiously-aggravated hate crime;
2 an additional Yes/No ‘Apostasy’ flag could be provided;
The questionnaire for the annual Crime Survey in England and Wales could collect additional details of religiously motivated hate crime (already collected for racially motivated crime),
3 including religion/belief targeted, and whether the crime was perceived to be based on the victim having left a religion.
Wilson Chowdhry said:
“The Committee cannot say ‘There is nothing see here’ when they have essentially not made a genuine effort to look.
“The violent nature of the crimes committed against the witnesses in our report on Apostasy-Hatred were grievous and warrant a thorough investigation.
“There may not be enough evidence quantified for the committee to change a law, but the evidence that has been submitted is verifiable, it is terrifying not only for those who suffered it, and also for those community members silently forced to watch.
“The evidence is there, but the questions are not being asked. The authorities need a mechanism to quantify the crimes – they need the language with which to identify it and they much call it for what it is.
“Let’s investigate and do the research properly on the matter. BPCA maintains that we have demonstrated that there are identifiable reasons why crimes of this nature are not reported that continue to be left unaddressed.”
“When the authorities have not yet incorporated the measures to quantify the data for apostasy-related hate crimes, calling these numbers negligible seems irresponsible given the qualitative aspects of the report that we submitted.
“To call the numbers negligible – without first counting – corrupts justice and shows that in the UK, we are not taking our internal human rights practices seriously.”
BPCA is calling on the statutory authorities to take the hate directed at apostates seriously, along with the treats and harm they endure for simply choosing their own path. Freedom of Religion and Belief is for everyone regardless of their origins and must be respected.
We call for the prosecution of Zaheer Hussain under hate-crime legislation, charges against the driver accomplice for his participation and traffic violations, as well as the investigation of the third participant mentioned.
Wilson Chowdhry, Nissar Hussain, and Muhammed Fiaz have all offered to be witnesses at any hearing or inquiry to attest to the hurt, offence, fear caused when apostasy related hate-crimes such as this vile rant by Zaheer Hussain when the harmful impact that they create is ignored and their actions are treated with impunity.
To sign our petition STOP APOSTASY ABUSE IN THE UK
British Pakistani Christian Association, continues to provide advocacy and humanitarian aid to Christians in Pakistan and the Pak-Christian diaspora. We cannot do it without your help please donate by clicking (here)