Monday, March 07, 2005

I'm not surprised at all

UK: I suspected that there was more to Shabina Begum case than some 16 year finding herself given her political statements. I was right.

"A local MP said today the Muslim community in Luton was blaming Shuweb Rahman for "egging on" his sister to bring the action against her former school, which had refused to teach her when she turned up for lessons in head-to-toe Islamic dress. Mr Rahman, a 22-year-old student, is said to be a supporter of the Islamic group Hizb ut-Tahrir, whose ultimate aim is a worldwide Muslim state. Hizb ut-Tahrir has admitted advising Shabina Begum, who won her appeal on Wednesday, over the past 12 months. "....Margaret Moran, Labour MP for Luton South, said: "The community's view was very, very strongly this had nothing to do with the girl's education but that this was a political stunt made by a fundamentalist group. The word in the community is her brother is a member of Hizb ut-Tahrir. The imams know it, the community leaders know it. My view is this has been engineered by the brother and I feel very sad for this girl ... this has nothing to do with education or uniforms." Khalid Mahmood, Labour MP for Birmingham Perry Bar, said: "She [Shabina] has been used as a political football by Hizb ut-Tahrir. They have been working on this girl. They want an Islamic revolution and they will try to disrupt anybody they can." The MP has in the past likened the group to the British National Party and claimed it had a record of targeting young people to lure them away from the mainstream Muslim community. Dr Nazreen Nawaz, Hizb ut-Tahrir's women's representative, confirmed she had advised Shabina. "We offered her general support. She just needed encouragement. Our work in the west is about explaining Islam to the community. I first had contact with her about a year ago. It was to give general advice about the Islamic view on the issue of the jilbab. But it needs to be stressed she is somebody who thinks for herself."

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