Network MCB - Issue 14: August 2015

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Time to take  Islamophobic attacks seriously

Another Islamophobic murder, violent attacks against Muslims, seemingly undertaken because of the professed Islamic faith of the victims.

The Muslim Council of Britain renews its call on the government and authorities to take Islamophobic crimes seriously, and appeals to editors and producers to reflect on the hostile atmosphere that currently exists which has effectively normalised anti-Muslim hatred.

This comes after the death of 81 year old Muhsin Ahmed, who was attacked on his way to prayers at a mosque in Rotherham.

(Muhsin Ahmed)

Dr Shuja Shafi, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain said: “This is an absolute disgusting and horrific crime against an elderly man. We hope the perpetrators are brought to justice and serve a time fitting that of taking the life of a ‘gentle’ grandfather”. More recently we have seen a worrying upsurge in attacks on Muslims. We urge our government and police to do more to tackle this menace head on and have a strategy in place to counter the growth in hate crimes against Muslims.”

In the last ten days, there have been two additional violent attacks against Muslims: on 14 August, a Muslim nurse was attacked in Stockport, while in Nelson on Lancashire, two men were attacked with an air rifle again, on their way to a mosque. Find out more about the attacks here.

Joint Declaration by Muslims to Fight Climate Change

The Islamic Climate Declaration released on 18th August 2015, called on 1.6 billion Muslims to work towards phasing out fossil fuel use, as a religious duty to fight climate change. It also called on all leaders and politicians to do their part for a better future for all.

In common with all the Abrahamic faiths, Islam considers mankind to be stewards of resources endowed by Allah. This implies responsible stewardship of these resources. > More.

Countering Extremism

MCB Attends Conference in Nigeria on Youth Radicalisation

On 10-11 August 2015, Assistant Secretary General, Mr Miqdaad Versi attended a regional conference in Nigeria on 'Islam, youth militancy and the challenges of peace-building'. Mr Versi presented key findings from the UK of how and why young people get radicalised. The conference was organised by the Centre for Regional Integration and Development in collaboration with the Assembly of Muslims in Nigeria.

Prime Ministers Speech on Extremism

Read the MCB's initials response to the Prime Minister's speech on extremism. In it, Dr Shuja Shafi says, “We support sound evidence-based measures that confront terrorism effectively. Muslims across the world and in our country in particular, find the conduct and values of Daesh to be abhorrent. We agree with the Prime Minister that we must de-glamourise the Daesh cause. It is neither revolutionary, nor cool, and it certainly is against the basic teachings of Islam. We all have a part to play in this, including the media. We worry, however, that these latest suggestions will set new litmus tests which may brand us all as extremists, even though we uphold and celebrate the rule of law, democracy and rights for all. Dissenting is a proud tradition of ours that must not be driven underground...We need to define tightly and closely what extremism is rather than perpetuate a deep misunderstanding of Islam and rhetoric, which inevitably facilitates extremists to thrive.

>See the full statement 

Give Your Views on Prevent and the Strategy to Combat Extremism

As Muslim voices have been completely ignored, and the Government has failed to engage with Muslim communities in any meaningful dialogue about these issues, there is a chance to give your views on PREVENT and countering extremism by participating in a survey. The survey, organised by the EU Forum for Ethnic Minority Individuals, Communities and Organisations (EFEMICO) is intended to provide a counter narrative to government strategies to address extremism and radicalisation, from a wider Muslim perspective. The survey is anonymous and not part of any government initiative or area of work. Give your views here.

MCB in the News

Read the Secretary General's opinion piece on British Values published in the Sunday People. Dr Shuja Shafi asks what exactly are British ­values and who gets to define them?


> Watch Shaykh Ibrahim Mogra review the papers on BBC Breakfast News last Saturday.

>Listen to Professor Iqbal Asaria, an advisor to the MCB, discussing household debt in the UK on BBC Radio 4 - The Debt Business.

Cancellation of Muhammad Cartoon Exhibition

In the past week, we have seen how those who have been spreading bigotry and provoking strife against Muslims have succeeded, as seemingly Islamophobic attacks have occurred in Rotherham, Stockport and Nelson, Lancashire. The MCB welcomed the news of the cancellation of the exhibition, which seemed to have been aimed at creating division in our society according to an attendee of an early meeting of the exhibition organisers (see Hope Not Hate’s report here). We must not fulfil the aims of those who want to spread hatred and division in our society.

Organ Donation

Dr Shuja Shafi attended a meeting on 29th August 2015 in Birmingham to discuss the demand and donations of organs from ethnic and Muslim communities.

MCB Briefings for Jummah Khutbah

MCB encourages mosques to integrate social affairs topics into their weekly Friday prayer speeches (khutbas). One source for this is the MCB's British Muslims in Numbers one-page briefings, a short concise summary on specific subjects affecting Muslims in the UK today.

Imams can structure their talks around the facts presented in the briefings and encourage their congregation to engage with the topic.

Recent briefings have included:
1. British Muslims are relatively young
2. Elderly Muslim have greater health concerns
3. Doubling in number of elderly Muslims
4. Significant proportion of Muslims in Britain are educationally well-qualified
All the briefings can be downloaded at:

Welcome to New Affiliates

*Human Care Hands Foundation UK


MCB invites you to affiliate your organisation!

If your organisation is not already affiliated to the MCB and you can confirm that it is a Muslim organisation which has been in existence for at least a year, has a governing document, affirms faith in the Oneness of Allah and belief that Muhammad (saw) is the final messenger, please download the Affiliation Form, fill in and send back to us.

In this Newsletter:

* Time to Take Islamophobic Attacks Seriously
* Muslims on Climate Change
* Countering Extremism
*Health and Travel Advice for Hajj Pilgrims
* High Court Ruling on Post Mortems
*Community News
*Welcoming New Affiliates

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The Muslim Council of Britain is a national representative Muslim umbrella body with over 500 mosques and other organisations affiliated to it.

The MCB is pledged to work for the common good. An independent Muslim organisation funded entirely by Britain's Muslim community. 

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Community News

Travelling for Hajj?

Consular staff in Saudi Arabia will be hosting a Twitter Q&A session where Brits can ask questions about their trip and seek travel advice, and any help and support. Join the Twitter session on 3rd September 2015 between 12pm-1pm. You can ask your questions ahead of the session, and will receive responses during the session.


  • Thursday 3rd September 2015 - 12-1pm
  • Tweet your questions to: 
    @UKinSaudiArabia using #HajiUK
MCB Welcomes the High Court Ruling on Autopsies
The Muslim Council of Britain welcomes the High Court ruling which backs the right to ask for post-mortems to be carried out by scan rather than cutting open the body in what is known as an 'invasive autopsy'.

The MCB has been campaigning on this for several years as regular post mortems delay the burial of the deceased and require the body to be cut open, whilst Islamic traditions require immediate burial of the body without invasive operations. This is good news for both Muslim and Jewish communities whose religion requires immediate burial of the deceased, without any undue interference or impediment to the body.
See the letter of appreciation received from the Lawyer of the case MCB sent its support to.

Recent Events attended by the MCB

70th Anniversary of Hiroshima

On 6th August 2015, Talha Ahmad from the MCB attended an interfaith service to remember lives lost when the first atomic bombs were dropped seventy years ago, organised by Quakers in Britain. A statement signed by UK faith leaders and representatives can be read here.

Giving Voice to British Muslims

Help give voice to our diverse British Muslim community by supporting the work of the Muslim Council of Britain.

The Muslim Council of Britain is an independent organisation funded by modest affiliation fees and donations from our community.

What the Muslim Council of Britain Does

The Muslim Council of Britain exists to serve the community and seek the common good. 

Through the dedication of volunteers and a small staff the MCB sets out to:

You can donate online or by texting MCBG33 to 70070 with the amount you wish to donate.

Thank you for your continued support.

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