New Zealand attack: Statement from the British Muslim Forum

Following the tragic events in Christchurch, New Zealand, the British Muslim Forum, which is chaired by the Principal of Jamia Al-Karam, Shaykh Muhammad Imdad Hussain Pirzada, issued the following statement.

Also, read ‘The Peril of Insanity’ by the Vice-Principal of Jamia Al-Karam written in March 2016, and remains ever more relevant:

The BMF condemns attack in New Zealand and calls for leadership to counter Islamophobia and anti-immigrant hate

On this tragic day, thoughts and prayers of the communities of Britain are with the 49 people who have been killed, and those who have been injured, in the terror attack and mass shooting that took place earlier on Friday in New Zealand, after a gunmen opened fire at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The attack has been described as the worst act of violent terror committed in New Zealand.

From the reports that are coming out regarding this tragedy as well as the dreadful live-streaming of this abhorrent attack, it appears that the gunman had written an anti-immigrant and Islamophobic manifesto that expresses sentiments of extremism and far-right ideology. The rise of Islamophobia and the far-right across the world is alarming and the British Muslim Forum calls for strategic leadership at a national and global level to counter hatred and violence in all its forms, as well as the demonization of immigrants, Muslims and other minority communities.

The British Muslim Forum firmly condemns the attack on mosques and worshippers that took place in New Zealand. It further pays tribute to all those who bravely faced this circumstance and helped save lives.

BMF Spokesperson and Chief Imam of the Leeds Makkah Mosque, Imam Qari Asim MBE, said, “The gunman who brutally murdered innocent worshippers in the mosque in Christchurch, Newzealand, wanted to spread hatred and fear. Innocent people have been killed in cold blood but we will not let terrorists, Islamophobes and vile-opportunists succeed. We must stand together to drown out extremism and hatred with hope and unity.”

The British Muslim Forum calls on all members of society to remain extra vigilant. Mosques across Britain will be holding special prayers today during Friday Prayers for all those affected by the terror attack in New Zealand.