Controversial cleric to visit UK

Mohammed Umer, of the Ramadhan Foundation, said the invitation to Dr Qaradawi had been sent in January and there was no reason to rescind it following the London bombings. “What’s actually happened in London, we condemn it, yet the reality of Youssef al Qaradawi is that he is the flag bearer of moderation in the Muslim world,” he said. “We agree with people and we disagree with people. For example, Nelson Mandela, when he was in prison, he was labelled as a terrorist but when he came out he became a freedom fighter. Youssef al Qaradawi is the same person who, after the London events, came out and clearly stated that it was un-Islamic.”

BBC News, 18 July 2005