London, 17 Ramadan 1436/4 July 2015 (MINA) – Muslim organisations in the UK have condemned a move by an anti-Sharia campaign group to host an exhibition featuring cartoons of Prophet Muhammad in London in September.
Azad Ali, chair of the Muslim Safety Forum based in London, told Al Jazeera on Friday the proposed “Muhammed Cartoon Exhibit” by UK-based Sharia Watch was an attempt to taunt the tolerance levels of British Muslims, and described the move as a cheap attempt to create disharmony in the UK.
“They keep on pushing the boundary … this is what this is about: getting a reaction from Muslims and looking for a justification to demonise us,” Ali said.
“We are looking to find ways for a positive discussion to come out of this, but no one thinks the planned event is anything but racist,” he said, Al Jazeera quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA).
The exhibit is set to feature controversial Dutch politician Geert Wilders as a speaker. Wilders is known to be vehemently anti-Islam.
Talking to Al Jazeera, Miqdaad Versi, assistant secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, said the proposed event illustrated that Islamophobia had now become socially acceptable in Britain.
“It [Islamophobia] has become mainstream, and acceptable, and this has provided a platform for more extreme views to surface,” Versi said.
Depictions of Prophet Muhammad are banned in Islam and many Muslims say they are being continuously provoked and taunted with demeaning depictions of the prophet that are often seen as “vile and racist”. (T/P001/NMT)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)