London, Asharq al-Awsat- British Environment Minister, Jim Fitzpatrick, has said that Islamic fundamentalists have infiltrated the British Labour Party. In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph, the British Minister said that the ruling Labour party, which he is a member of, has been infiltrated by an extremist Islamist group that want to create an “Islamic social and political order” in Britain. The newspaper quoted Fitzpatrick as saying that the Islamic Forum of Europe (IFE) which believes in Islamic Shariaa law and wants to turn Britain and Europe into an Islamic state, has placed sympathizers in elected officers in the borough of Tower Hamlets in East London, and claims correctly to be able to achieve “mass mobilization” of voters.
Fitzpatrick told the Sunday Times “They [the IFE] are acting as an entryist organization, placing people within the political parties, recruiting members to those political parties, trying to get individuals selected and elected so they can exercise political influence and power, whether it’s at local government level or national level.”
For his part, Muslim preacher Omar Bakri, the spiritual guide of the banned extremist Islamist al-Ghurabaa movement told Asharq Al-Awsat in a telephone interview from Tripoli, Lebanon, where he currently resides that “engaging in the political process, meaning a Muslim joining a non-Islamic British [political] party, is something that is not permissible, and this is a sin and something that I do not encourage. However I do not doubt the sincere intentions of the Muslims who engage in the political process, and the Prophet peace be upon him told us that God will grant Islamic victory, even against the immoral.”
Omar Bakri, who was the former leader of the now disbanded al-Muhajiroun movement, added that “the fundamentalist secularists will target Muslim preachers and youth regardless of whether they take part in the political process and [join] political parties in Britain, and this will have a positive impact on Muslim preaching in the future because people will realize that the al-Ghurabaa movement and the [al-Muhajiroun] movement and others have been banned as a result of a strategy to target Islam under the pretext of combating terrorism.”
Bakri also asked “[what is] the meaning behind the West’s fear of some Muslims becoming involved in non-Islamic political parties?”
Omar Bakri moved to Britain in 1986, where he went on to become one of the most famous radical clerics in the country. In 2005, following the London July bombings, Bakri left Britain for Lebanon, and the British government promptly banned him from returning after the British media launched a media campaign against him as a result of his extremist views. He once described the September 11 hijackers as “the Magnificent 19” and called on all Muslims to emigrate from Britain.
Bakri also told Asharq Al-Awsat that “the call to God is the message of the prophets, and the work of the Islamic organizations, and this is something promoted and protected by the Islamic faith, and God said ‘Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious’ [Surat an-Nahl; Verse 125]. We praise God according to His call that “Who is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allah, works righteousness, and says: I am of those who bow in Islam?” [Surat al-Fussilat; Verse 33]. Therefore it is not surprising that among those Muslims in the West, and in Britain in particular, there are those who are preaching Islam and working towards establishing divine Shariaa law. We have succeeded in sowing the seeds of preaching [the message of God] and Islamic concepts.”
Al-Bakri added that “We have raised almost three generations of Muslim youth, and thanks to God, this preaching has begun to bear fruit in a number of different forms, and perhaps the statements by British Environment Minister, Jim Fitzpatrick, are the best evidence of the success of this preaching in Britain by my al-Muhajiroun and al-Ghurabaa movements, in addition to other sincere preachers such as Abu Qatada, Abu Hamza, Abu Ezz Eddin, Abdullah el-Faisal, Abu Basir al-Tartusi, Hani al-Sibai, and Anjem Choudry.”