- Conservative Party candidate Zac Goldsmith accused Khan of giving “platform, oxygen and cover” to Islamic extremists. He also accused Khan of “hiding behind Britain’s Muslims” by branding as “Islamophobes” those who shed light on his past.
- “The questions are genuine, they are serious. They are about his willingness to share platforms with people who want to ‘drown every Israeli Jew in the sea.’ It’s about his having employed someone who believed the Lee Rigby murder was fabricated. It’s about his career before being an MP, coaching people in how to sue the police.” — Conservative Party candidate Zac Goldsmith.
- “A Muslim man with way too many extremist links to be entirely coincidental is now the Mayor of London. I suppose this is hardly a shock, though. The native English are a demographic minority (and a rapidly dwindling one) in London, whilst Muslims from Pakistan and Bangladesh are a rapidly expanding demographic.” — British politician Paul Weston.
Labour Party politician Sadiq Khan has been sworn in as mayor of London. He is the first Muslim to lead a major European capital.
Khan, 45, is the London-born son of Pakistani immigrants. His father was a bus driver and he grew up with seven siblings in a government-subsidized apartment. He studied law, became a university professor and served as chairman of the civil liberties pressure group Liberty. He was elected to Parliament in 2005. Khan’s supporters say he is the epitome the Muslim immigrant success story.
Khan — who won 57% of the ballot, or 1.3 million votes, a number which happens to be roughly equal to Muslim population of London — has promised to be “the British Muslim who takes the fight to the extremists.” Others are not so sure. During the election campaign, Khan faced a steady stream of allegations about his past dealings with Muslim extremists and anti-Semites.
Khan has promised to be “the British Muslim who takes the fight to the extremists.” Others are not so sure. During the election campaign, Khan faced a steady stream of allegations about his past dealings with Muslim extremists and anti-Semites.
Khan’s opponent, Conservative Party politician Zac Goldsmith, drew attention to Khan’s past career as a human rights lawyer that included repeated public appearances alongside radical Muslims.
Goldsmith accused Khan of giving “platform, oxygen and cover” to Islamic extremists. He also accused Khan of “hiding behind Britain’s Muslims” by branding as “Islamophobes” those who shed light on his past.
In an interview with the London Evening Standard, Goldsmith said:
“To be clear, I have never suggested he [Khan] is an extremist but without a shadow of doubt he has given platform, oxygen and cover to people who are extremists.
“I think he is playing with fire. The questions are genuine, they are serious. They are about his willingness to share platforms with people who want to ‘drown every Israeli Jew in the sea.’
“It’s about his having employed someone who believed the Lee Rigby murder was fabricated. It’s about his career before being an MP, coaching people in how to sue the police.
Goldsmith also drew attention to Khan’s ties with Suliman Gani, a Muslim cleric in Tooting, the constituency in South London where Khan is an MP. “To share a platform nine times with Suliman Gani, one of the most repellent figures in this country, you don’t do it by accident,” Goldsmith said.
Goldsmith was referring to a Sunday Times exposé, which revealed that between 2004 and 2013, Khan had spoken alongside Gani on at least nine occasions, “even though Gani has called women ‘subservient’ to men and condemned homosexuality, gay marriage, and even organ transplants.”
Gani — who has ties to the extremist Islamist group Hizb-ut-Tahrir, and has rallied in support of Shaker Aamer, an al-Qaeda terrorist who was detained at Guantanamo Bay — is also linked to the London-based Tayyibun Institute, which the British government says “tolerates or promotes non-violent extremism.”
In an interview with the Times, Davis Lewin, deputy director of the Henry Jackson Society, an anti-extremism think tank, said:
“Gani has campaigned on behalf of convicted terrorists, appeared at events designed to undermine government counter-radicalization strategies, including sharing platforms with a pro-terrorist organization such as CAGE, and is said to hold repugnant views about women and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans community.
“Given that the UK, and London in particular, is a major target for Islamist-inspired terrorist attacks, it is intolerable to see any politician, much less one seeking such a vitally important office as mayor of London, associate with an individual such as this.
“Mr Khan’s reportedly repeatedly sharing a platform with this man, whose views are widely available, is deeply alarming.”
In 2002, Khan represented the leader of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan. Khan tried to reverse a decision by the Home Office, which had banned Farrakhan from entering the UK due to fears that his anti-Semitic views would stir up racial hatred. Farrakhan has called Jews “bloodsuckers” and referred to Judaism as “a gutter religion.”
At the time, Khan said: “Mr. Farrakhan is not anti-Semitic and does not preach a message of racial hatred and antagonism.” Khan added:
“Farrakhan is preaching a message of self-discipline, self-reliance, atonement and responsibility. He’s trying to address the issues and problems we have in the UK, black on black crime and problems in the black community. It’s outrageous and astonishing that the British Government is trying to exclude this man.”
Khan now says: “Even the worst people deserve a legal defense.”
In 2004, Khan was the chief legal advisor to the Muslim Council of Britain, a group linked to the Muslim Brotherhood. Khan defended Yusuf al-Qaradawi, an Egyptian-born Islamist who has been banned from entering the UK. Al-Qaradawi has expressed support for Hamas suicide bombings against Israel: “It’s not suicide, it is martyrdom in the name of Allah.” According to Khan, however, “Quotes attributed to this man may or may not be true.”
Also in 2004, Khan shared a platform with a half-dozen Islamic extremists in London at a political meeting where women were told to use a separate entrance. One of the speakers was Azzam Tamimi, who has said he wants Israel destroyed and replaced with an Islamic state. Another speaker was Daud Abdullah, who has led boycotts of Holocaust Memorial Day. Yet another speaker was Ibrahim Hewitt, a Muslim hardliner who believes that adulterers should be “stoned to death.”
Full article: Meet the First Muslim Mayor of London (Gatestone Institute)