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Passion Islam I February 2009 LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS I 7
Israeli massacres thwart
counter-terrorism efforts
British government efforts to counter “There is a real feeling of terrorism,” he said. “They [the Blair
terrorism have been set back by helplessness, hopelessness and administration] were very unwilling to
Israel’s latest massacre of more than powerlessness among Britain’s have any debate about how our foreign
1,300 Palestinians in Gaza, Security Muslims in the context of Gaza,” policy impacted on radicalization.”
and Counter-terrorism Minister, Lord Malik said. “People have become West, a former head of the British
West has warned. so disillusioned that they almost navy, who was brought in Gordon
“The business in Gaza has not appear to have stopped listening to Brown’s ‘government of all talents’ 18
helped us at all in our counter- politicians,” he said. months ago, claimed that the current
radicalism strategy,” West said in was ‘much clearer’ on a linkage.
an outspoken assessment of the He admitted that the UK had
terror risk facing Britain. “Without a struggled with comprehending the
doubt it will have set us back,” he causes of terrorism, saying that
said. they were ‘so diverse’.
“We have key people in the “We didn’t understand it, we
Muslim community who we are in still don’t totally understand it but
dialogue with, and they are quick to we actually have a far, far better
let us know there is an issue that is understanding than we did in the
causing us a worry,” he said. past,” the security minister said.
“They said it was coming over “To pretend what happens abroad
very badly,” the minister warned. has no impact is nonsense,” he
“There is no doubt that when said.
you see these pictures coming back Earlier this month, the head of
(from Gaza), that in the mind of MI5 security services, Jonathan
people making hate, there is a linkage Addressing a seminar on the Evans, said the Israeli killings in Gaza
between the US, Israel and the UK,” adaptation of new buildings to the gave extremist groups in the UK more
he said. terror threat, the security minister was ideological ammunition.
His warning comes after Justice scathing about the assertion, made by Communities Secretary, Hazel
Minister Shahid Malik cautioned that former prime minister Tony Blair that Blears, has also expressed that she
there was ‘immense anger’ among the foreign policy did not alter the UK’s was ‘very concerned’ that Israel’s
UK’s two million Muslim communities risk of a terror attack. military offensive in Gaza could
over the Israeli massacres and that “We never used to accept that our be used by extremists to recruit
their ‘patience is running out’. foreign policy ever had any effect on vulnerable young people.
British MPs condemn
Israel’s ban on Arab parties
The British government is being urged Understanding (CAABU). make “urgent representations to get
to pressure Israel to lift its ban on two The suspension of the two Arab the ban lifted and to ensure that such
Arab parties from standing at this parties, who currently have seven measures are never repeated again.”
months elections. elected members of the Israeli Knesset, Early day motions allow
An Early Day Motion, raised in was proposed by the ultra nationalist parliamentary representatives to
parliament, “condemns the decision by Yisrael Beiteinu and National Union, express their opinions and petition
the Israeli Central Election Committee but was also supported by other for support on issues which have no
to ban two Arab political parties, Jewish parties, including Labour. date fixed for debate in the House of
United Arab List-Talal and Balad, from “The reasons cited for the ban Commons.
standing in Israeli General Election.” include that they had called for equal CAABU, which is the oldest and
“This decision further undermines rights and had refused to recognise largest organisation of its kind, was
Israel’s claims to be a democracy,” Israel as a democratic state,” said set up in 1967, to campaign for justice
warns the motion, initiated by Labour the motion, which so far has received for the Palestinians by promoting
MP John Austin, the joint chair of cross-party support from 20 MPs. a positive approach to Arab-British
the parliamentary-led Committee The MPs said that they were relations in government, parliament,
for the Advancement of Arab-British calling on the British government to media and amongst the wider public.
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