Thursday, September 20, 2007

Muslim Group Behind ‘Mega-Mosque’ Seeks To Convert All Britain

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Muslim Group Behind 'Mega-Mosque' Seeks To Convert All Britain

Andrew Norfolk

A Muslim group that wants to open a giant £100 million mosque in London has set its sights on "winning the whole of Britain to Islam".

Tablighi Jamaat aims to build an Islamic complex near to the site of the 2012 Olympic stadium, with a mosque for 12,000 people, by far the largest religious building in Britain.

The organisation, which has millions of followers worldwide, insists that it is a peaceful, apolitical revivalist movement that promotes Islamic consciousness among individual Muslims. However, intelligence agencies have cautioned that the group's ability to fire young men with a zeal for Islam acts as a staging post, for some, along a path that leads to jihadist terrorism.

Kafeel Ahmed, the Indian doctor who died from burns last month after trying to set off a car bomb at Glasgow Airport, is the latest in a line of terrorists for whose initial radicalisation Tablighi Jamaat has been blamed. The group (literally, the preaching party) belongs to the ultra-conservative Deobandi school of thought within Sunni Islam, whose adherents run more than 600 of Britain's 1,350 mosques...