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IHRC: Prevent is putting religious intolerance at the heart of policy

Prof. John Holmwood argues that David Cameron’s ‘muscular liberalism’ as done away with multiculturalism and constructed a notion of ‘British values’ that scapegoats ethnic minorities by presuming they share none of these values. This has huge implications for education, since it has been injected into schools via the academies (and free schools) programme which removed schools from local authority control and which was actively promoted by Policy Exchange and pursued by Michael Gove. The requirement to promote ‘fundamental British values’ that is part of Prevent is incorporated under Section 78 of the Education Act 2002, which means that the moral and spiritual development of children is now subordinated to a national security agenda. Source: The British Government’s Prevent strategy: Putting religious intolerance at the heart of policy – IHRC

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Community Policy Forum: Leicester disturbances explained

30 Sept 2022 – Dr. Chris Allen writes for the Community Policy Forum that tensions between some of the city’s Hindus and Muslims have been deteriorating and have been exacerbated a decade of austerity measures and cuts to local services. Allen also notes that: concerns were present within the city since at least 2019, so the city’s leadership has not been ‘unwarned’. the Home Secretary Suella Braverman visited Leicestershire Police on 22 September and called on the police to do their job “without fear or favour”. simultaneously, Conservative MP Bob Blackman sent a letter to Braverman blaming the disturbances on “Islamic extremists”, but he is a long-time supporter of the BJP in India. Source: Leicester Disturbances Between Hindus and Muslims: An Explainer – Community Policy Forum

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Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Prevent described as ‘toxic brand’ during Council meeting

Prevent was described as a “toxic brand” at a heated Council meeting this week, where councillors said more focus needed to be placed on right wing terrorism. Councillors said there was a perception among many that counter terrorism scheme was an anti-Muslim programme, and this made it difficult to have important conversations about extremism with some communities in the city. During the Bradford West Area Committee, one councillor claimed there needed to be a greater focus on far right radicalisation – pointing out that the gun that killed Batley and Spen MP Jo Cox had come from Bradford, but no one had ever been arrested over this.

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The PROP Expert View: How Prevent impacts your beliefs and your mosque

Two crucial takeaways from the podcast between Prevent Watch’s Dr Layla Aitlhadj and Dilly Hussain from 5 Pillars that you may have missed: Prevent is a psychological control policy that is about placing its target group – in our case, Muslims – in a disempowered, apologetic position as a default, and it is counter-productive to the proper functioning of our mosques. It is there to stop people from expressing our perfectly legal and non-violent beliefs fully and freely, and to regulate Islamic learning. But Muslims need to protect their beliefs and their mosques, for more than just the sake of social activism. Because when you take on the Prevent “attitude”, you distance yourself from your Islamic identity and your beliefs can begin to change. Source: How Prevent impacts islamic beliefs and mosques – The People Review of Prevent

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Middle East Eye: Vast majority of anti-Muslim Twitter posts come from India

A new report, Islamophobia in the Digital Age by the Islamic Council of Victoria in Canada, has revealed that over a two-year period, between 28 August 2019 and 27 August 2021, India was the main culprit of spreading Islamophobia on social media. India recorded the by-far highest figure of Islamophobic tweets, with 871,379, followed by the US with 289,248, and the UK, with 196,376. The report states that in India, the rampant Islamophobia is a result of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) normalisation of hatred against Muslims. The report also concluded that Twitter ‘drastically failing’ at removing anti-Muslim content, but that politicians and leading figures can have a positive impact. Source: Majority of anti-Muslim Twitter posts come from US, UK and India | Middle East Eye

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The New Arab: Muslims mourn the Queen under Prevent’s watchful eye

Afroze F Zaidi writes about how counter-narrative against the outpouring of grief emerged from those hailing from former British colonies, not about the loss of a monarch they knew from a distance, but articulating the collective and individual pain for which the monarchy is responsible. But this counter-narrative was absent among many Muslim organisations. For British Muslims, counter-terror and anti-extremism measures such as Prevent work hard to ensure that they stay in line. So an occasion such as the Queen’s death isn’t an opportunity for sincere reflection or honesty – rather it serves as a test of loyalty. Source: Muslims mourn the Queen under Prevent’s watchful eye

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