Islam Channel promotes hatred and extremism, claims Quilliam

Britain’s leading Islamic TV channel has regularly broadcast demeaning material about women and promoted extremist groups, it was alleged yesterday.

Programmes on the Islam Channel have told women they should not refuse to have sex with their husbands or leave home without their permission, an inquiry by the Islamic think-tank the Quilliam Foundation found. Women who wear perfume in public have been labelled prostitutes.

The channel has regularly acted as a propaganda platform for Hizb ut-Tahrir, the fundamentalist organisation that Tony Blair wanted to ban after the 2005 London bombings. It has also promoted hate preachers, a report said.

And, the inquiry by the Islamic think tank the Quilliam Foundation found, its broadcasts are also trying to sow hatred between different Muslim groups by promoting a single strand of hardline theology.

The Islam Channel, launched in 2004, is the most watched satellite channel aimed at a Muslim audience and the think tank is now calling for an investigation by regulator Ofcom.

Report author Talal Rajab said:  “Unfortunately during the three month period that we monitored its output, it repeatedly promoted bigoted and reactionary views towards women, non-Muslims and other Muslims who follow different versions of Islam.

“Although the channel does not directly call for terrorist violence, it clearly helps to create an atmosphere in which religiously-sanctioned intolerance and even hatred might be seen as acceptable.”

Daily Mail, 26 March 2010

See also Evening Standard, 25 March 2010

Once again we ask: how much longer will Ed Husain and his sordid little gang of witch-hunters be allowed to continue their divisive activities with the assistance of large sums of taxpayers’ money?

Update:  See Islam Channel press release, 27 March 2010 and “Islam Channel becomes the latest UK Muslim institution to be attacked by the Quilliam Foundation”, MCB press release, 27 March 2010