Friday, 27 May 2011

Teacher's attackers jailed

Nadia Sam-Daliri, East London Advertiser, Gang jailed after attacking teacher for giving lessons to Muslim girls, 27 May 2011

"Akmol Hussain had pre-planned the attack with the others because the teacher was “mocking Islam” and “putting doubt in people’s minds”, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard in evidence."

BBC, RE teacher Gary Smith's Muslim attackers jailed, 26 May 2011

"Four Muslim men who assaulted a religious education teacher because they did not approve of him teaching Muslim girls have been jailed."

Duncan Gardham, Telegraph, Men who beat up RE teacher were terrorist suspects, 27 May 2011 "Jailing the gang at Snaresbrook Crown Court, Judge Hand said they had “literally smashed Mr Smith’s face in.”

"He said the motivation for the attack was solely down to the victim’s religious beliefs. He told them: “You believed there was a higher authority to which you were responsible and that authority dictated you must attack Mr Smith.""

East London Mosque, East London Mosque Condemns Attack on Religious Education Teacher, 11 Feb 2011 ""This horrendous attack on teacher Gary Smith by young thugs was all the more shocking because they made religion an excuse," said Dilowar Khan, Executive Director of the East London Mosque. "Their abhorrent actions are entirely contrary to the teachings of Islam.""

Bradford's new mayor

OnIslam, Britain Gets First Muslim Woman Lord Mayor, 24 May 2011 "Councilor Ikram was installed on Tuesday as the new lord mayor of Bradford. Chosen as the first Muslim woman for the post, Ikram is a Labour councilor for Little Horton since 2004."

'Oldham: A town still divided?'

Ben Chu, Independent, Oldham: A town still divided?, 26 May 2011

"The Oldham riots raised ugly questions about segregation. Ten years on, Ben Chu argues that the problems were always more nuanced – but that the town, along with Bradford and Burnley, is learning the lessons of its past."

Also see Ben Chu, Independent, Muslims in Britain continued, 26 May 2011 unpacks his findings further

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Shah Jahan Mosque, Woking

BBC News, In pictures: UK's oldest purpose-built mosque in Woking, 10 May 2011 good set of pix (tip: Yahya Birt)

Zamzam health scare

AFP/, Saudis reject claims that holy water in Mecca is hazardous, 8 May 2011: "Saudi authorities have rejected claims that holy water from a spring in the Grand Mosque of Mecca is polluted and hazardous to health, reported Agence-France Presse on Sunday.

"On May 5, the BBC reported that it had found holy water, known as Zamzam, to be contaminated with arsenic and being sold in shops in London.""

Remembering 1981

BBC - BBC Radio 2 Programmes - Jeremy Vine, 11 May 2011: "After one o'clock, a special programme looks back thirty years at the riots in Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side."

Jeremy Vine on Radio 2 yesterday had a good section on the Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side Riots of 1981. You can hear it via the BBC iPlayer (it came on after 1 o'clock, so scroll through an hour). Of course, the events are not specifically relating to Muslim communities, but the issues are relevant, and it will probably be of interest to many readers of this blog.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Events in London

This looks really good. Unfortunately, I will not be in London for this, but some readers of this blog might enjoy these events. Please contact the organisers if you have any questions about this, not myself! I have cut-and-pasted it from the organisers' email - I recommend you confirm details with them ...

In association with: Institute of Musical Research, University of London, Iran Heritage Foundation, Centre for Iranian Studies, SOAS and The Royal Anthropological Institute

Saturday 14th May to Friday 20th May 2011

A mini-festival of feature and documentary films, and a two-day conference, focusing on the rich musical heritage and the burgeoning new music scenes in the Middle East.

TWO-DAY CONFERENCE: Tuesday May 17th and Wednesday May 18th 2011
Venue: Institute of Musical Research, University of London

Speakers: Martin Stokes (Oxford), Nacim Pak (Edinburgh), Kay Dickinson (Goldsmiths), Kamran Rastegar (Tufts), Peyman Yazdanian (Iran), John Baily (Goldsmiths), Tony Langlois (Limerick), Havana Marking and Federico Spinetti (Alberta). Plus film screenings.  Further details:


FILM SCREENINGS (all films are in the original language with English subtitles)

FEATURE FILMS: Saturday May 14th 2011 and Sunday May 15th 2011
Tricycle Theatre, Kilburn:
Tickets: £8.50/£7.50
Box office: 020 7328 1000

Saturday May 14th 2011, 4pmThe Band’s Visit (Dir: Eran Kolirin, 2007/Israel/France/USA/89 mins)

Sunday May 15th 2011, 3pmSanturi (Dir: Dariush Mehrjui, 2008/Iran/106mins)

DOCUMENTARY FILMS: Thursday May 19th and Friday May 20th 2011
Venue: Khalili Lecture Theatre, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Admission free to all screenings below

Thursday May 19th 20111pm - Back Vocal (Dir: Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, 2003/Iran)
2pm - I love Hip Hop in Morocco (Dir: Joshua Asen & Jennifer Needleman, 2007/USA/Morocco)
3.30pm - Umm Kulthum, A Voice Like Egypt (Dir: Michael Goldman,1996/ USA/ Egypt)
4.40pm - Two Bows (Dir: Bahman Kiarostami, 2004/Iran)
5.40pm - Arabic Fusion: The Sound Between the Notes (Dir: Cyril Eberle, 2010/ Dubai)
6:30pm - Breaking the Silence (Dir: Simon Broughton, 2002/UK/Afghanistan)
7:30pm - Crossing the Bridge (Dir: Faith Akin, 2005/Germany/Turkey)

Friday, May 20th 20112pm - Sounds of Silence (Dir: Amir Hamz & Mark Lazarz, 2006/Germany/ Iran)
3pm -  A Kabul Music Diary (Dir: John Baily, 2003/UK/Afghanistan)
4pm - Muezzin (Dir: Sebastian Brameshuber, 2008/Austria/Turkey)
5:30pm - The Singing Barber of Mosul (Dir: Katia Saleh, 2007/Lebanon)
6pm -  Slingshot Hip-Hop (Dir: Jackie Reem Salloum, 2008/Palestine/USA)
7:30pm  - Heavy Metal in Baghdad (Dir: Eddy Moretti & Soroosh Alvi, 2008/USA/ Iraq)

Times may be subject to change. Full details on:

Monday, 9 May 2011

Conference; "The Umayyads: History, Art and Culture in the First Century of Islam"

"The Umayyads: History, Art and Culture in the First Century of Islam", University of Edinburgh, 24-25 June 2011 "The aim of the present conference is to revisit the Umayyad era – history, art and culture – in the light of recent research, and to stimulate reflection on the representation of this past in the modern world."

Sounds interesting. Please address any enquiries to the organisers (not myself!).


AP, Internet chatter up on bin Laden revenge attacks, 7 May 2011 "Pipe bombs, a targeted car crash, a lone gunman: Western intelligence officials said Friday they are seeing increased Internet and phone chatter about cheap, small-scale terror attacks to avenge the death of 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden.

"More than 100 protesters, meanwhile, gathered Friday outside the U.S. Embassy in London shouting, "USA, you will pay!" and warning of such revenge attacks.

Friday, 6 May 2011

"Ex-Taliban fighter in 'jihad recruitment bid'"

BBC News, Ex-Taliban fighter in 'jihad recruitment bid', 5 May 2011 "A former Taliban fighter tried to recruit undercover police officers in Manchester to fight in a holy war in Pakistan or Afghanistan, a court heard."