08 November, 2006

PC Farooq: Islamic reaction.

More on PC Farooq, the Muslim Met protection officer removed from duty because he failed the security vetting procedure. The local paper in Swindon, where Farooq was a policeman before moving to London, reports that,

The leader of a Swindon mosque has rubbished suggestions that a Muslim cleric linked to a suspected terrorist group was teaching children in the town....

...Azim Khan, secretary of the Thamesdown Islamic Association and general secretary of the Jamia Mosque, said he was "shocked and saddened" that his mosque had been tarred with a link to extremism....

...We made a policy about six years ago not to allow anybody into our community who stands for inter-community hatred and we have no association or affiliation with any groups around the country.
The iman they are talking about left three years ago and he did not have any links to terrorism," Mr Khan said.
Well he would say that. The security services, who know their own business best, say otherwise.

Reaction from the usual suspects is predictable. Inayat Bunglawala, of the Muslim Council of Great Britain, is himself no stranger to controversy. According to Life Style Extra, he said,
"It does appear that he was unfairly treated. Certainly there is a concern that smear and innuendo have taken the place of hard evidence.

"I don't think this particular story will come as a surprise to Muslims. It does cause concern, but it would be premature to speculate at this stage. It is possible that they are just being overly cautious.

"The reason that was given for removing him was because he was in contact with an alleged radical cleric. But there is no evidence this cleric ever committed any crime, or that Amjad Farooq was influenced by him, so it does seem to be unfair.

"We need to hear the other side. I don't want to be unfair to the Metropolitan Police - they've got a difficult task as well."
Well he would say that. The security services, who know their own business best, say otherwise. Oh, sorry, I already said that; but it really does reduce to a question of whether the security services are going to either err on the side of caution or take risks with the safety of the individuals they are charged with protecting.

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