British Muslims for Secular Democracy (bmsd) are shocked and profoundly distressed by the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby near the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich on 22nd May 2013.
The victim was a soldier who was described as a “loving father” to his two-year-old son, and we send our deepest condolences to his family and friends. We are also concerned about the anti-Muslim incidents that have been reported in the aftermath of the attack: a hundred EDL members marched through Woolwich, while other people posted hate-filled diatribes online. Two mosques were attacked and dozens of other incidents were reported through the Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks project.
Dr Shaaz Mahboob, trustee of BMSD, said: “It is crucial to challenge extremist and sectarian attitudes regardless of where they emanate, be that far-right extremism or extremism that purports to have a religious basis. We urge all communities to stand in solidarity against the forces of hate and discord.”
Notes to the editors:
- bmsd is made up of a group of Muslim democrats of diverse ethnic and social backgrounds, who support a clear separation between religion and the State.
- bmsd’s mission statement: “To promote civic engagement, social inclusion, responsible citizenship and good governance particularly within constituent Muslim communities of Britain; in order to build an understanding of the shared values between all citizens to enable them to live in an inclusive, pluralist, secular and confident Britain.”
- bmsd claims no mandate or false representative status. Our primary concern is democratic engagement not detailed theological analysis or debate. The level and depth of commitment to the doctrinal core and orthodoxy of the faith varies among Muslims as much as it does in members of other faith groups. bmsd founders wish to create a platform for alternative, diverse Muslim views, essential for a progressive, multi-layered, democratic identity that is not in conflict with itself or fellow citizens.
- For details please visit http://www.bmsd.org.uk
For any further queries, please contact: Dr Shaaz Mahboob on firstname.lastname@example.org or Tehmina Kazi on 0207 242 8691.