Skip to comments.UK: Radical cleric to preach at mosque
Posted on 07/09/2004 9:49:34 AM PDT by knighthawk
Controversial cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi was set to address worshippers at a London mosque but was expected to shy away from using it as a platform to voice his extremist views.
Dr al-Qaradawi, whose week-long visit to the country has attracted widespread criticism, was speaking at the Central London Mosque but is expected to preach mainstream Muslim views.
The Egyptian-born cleric will tell worshippers "that preserving Islamic identity does not contradict with being law-abiding citizens", a spokesman for the Muslim Association of Britain said.
The Crown Prosecution Service is considering a file against Dr al-Qaradawi for his inflammatory comments after he spoke openly of his support of suicide bombing in Israel and Iraq, saying that "martyrs" had no option.
The cleric was due to appear at the mosque in Regent's Park this afternoon.
A spokesman for the Muslim Association of Britain said: "He will tell worshippers that preserving Islamic identity does not contradict with being law-abiding citizens in a democracy that guarantees their basic human rights and freedom of worship and expression."
His visit came as the Metropolitan Police said Dr al-Qaradawi will not speak at a conference called Our Children Our Future in Wembley, north west London, which aims to stress the value of education to Muslim youth.
But Hasan Mueenuddin, conference organiser for the charity Dawatul Islam, insisted he would still address the conference, which takes place on Monday.
Dr al-Qaradawi arrived in the UK on Monday. Despite mounting concern, the Prime Minister and Home Secretary David Blunkett said that though his visit was being monitored, any exclusion from the country would have to be lawful. Tory leader Michael Howard has demanded to know why the Government did not stop his visit.
Dr al-Qaradawi, who has been banned from the US since 1999, addressed the annual meeting of the European Council of Fatwa and Research (ECFR) on Monday, as Mr Blunkett announced a renewed attempt to make the inciting of religious hatred a criminal offence.
If he can be locked up, throw him in a cell with "Hookless Hamza. "Dirty Harry" will never have to go down that dirt road again.
Wonder if he'll show up in Finsbury Park?