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Militant Islam Monitor > Satire > Muslims want mosque for 40,000 at planned Olympic complex in London - terrorist linked group want it as permanent HQ

Muslims want mosque for 40,000 at planned Olympic complex in London - terrorist linked group want it as permanent HQ

Jihad through Da'wa terrorist linked Tablighi Jamaat announces 'mosque for the future'
November 26, 2005

MIM: It bears noting that the planners of the new London Center aimed for 2012 no longer consider that the word Islamic or Muslims will be necessary in the name , which reveals that they anticipate that the United Kingdom will have become the United Ummah and that the new center -'intended to look like a tent city' will literally and figuratively be Merkaz London - The Center of (Muslim) London.

A complex which opened in 2005, was named the London Muslim Center and it's goals, which were spelled out at the opening, indicated that the London Muslim Center was intended to be the roots which would enable the growth and spread of Muslims (and Islam) into the political, social and economic life of Britain..."

Welcoming guests at the launch of the London Muslim Centre, Dr. Muhammad Abdul Bari, (Chairman, East London Mosque), and Yaqoob Johnson, (Chairman London Muslim Centre Committee) emphasised that "the London Muslim Centre allows the Muslim community to lay firm roots in British society, by re-affirming its British identity. British Muslims would need to continue to engage in the mainstream political, socio-cultural and economic life of Britain..."


Giant mosque for 40,000 may be built at London Olympics


A MASSIVE mosque that will hold 40,000 worshippers is being proposed beside the Olympic complex in London to be opened in time for the 2012 Games.

The project's backers hope the mosque and its surrounding buildings would hold a total of 70,000 people, only 10,000 fewer than the Olympic stadium.
Its futuristic design features wind turbines instead of the traditional minarets, while a translucent latticed roof would replace the domes seen on most mosques. The complex is designed to become the "Muslim quarter" for the Games, acting as a hub for Islamic competitors and spectators.

"It will be something never seen before in this country. It is a mosque for the future as part of the British landscape," said Abdul Khalique, a senior member of Tablighi Jamaat, a worldwide Islamic missionary group that is proposing the mosque as its new UK headquarters.

Tablighi Jamaat has come under scrutiny from western security agencies since 9/11. Two years ago, according to The New York Times, a senior FBI anti-terrorism official claimed it was a recruiting ground for Al-Qaeda. British police investigated a report that Mohammad Sidique Khan, leader of the July 7 London bombers, had attended its present headquarters in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire. In August, Bavaria expelled three members of the organisation on the grounds that it promoted Islamic extremism.

Defenders of Tablighi Jamaat say that it is not political and confines itself to humanitarian work. It was founded in India under the British Raj and has many members in Pakistan and Bangladesh.

The east London complex would have by far the largest capacity of any religious building in Britain. The biggest at present is the Baitul Futuh in Morden, Surrey, which holds about 10,000 worshippers. Liverpool's Anglican cathedral, the largest Christian place of worship, has a capacity of 3,000.

The new building will be called the London Markaz (Arabic for centre) and will be built in place of an existing mosque on a 10-acre site 500 yards from the Olympic development.

The three-storey mosque will be designed to accommodate more than 40,000 worshippers. Its sweeping roof is intended to evoke tented cities.
The complex would include a garden, school, library and accommodation for visiting worshippers.

Islamic calligraphy would cover the walls and ceilings, the washing areas would have cascading water to mimic a stream, and the complex's buildings would be adapted to allow extra worshippers during festivals such as Eid, accommodating a further 30,000 visitors.

Ali Mangera, the London and Barcelona-based architect who is designing the mosque, said: "People in this country build mosques with fake domes and plastic minarets to look like the mosques back home. Islam has traditionally been at the forefront of technology and change. The Markaz will reflect this. It will be more than a mosque. The whole idea behind it is to break down barriers."

Mangera has previously worked with leading British architects including Zaha Hadid, designer of the Cardiff opera house. Mangera and Tablighi Jamaat are in negotiations with Newham council, the Greater London Authority and the Thames Gateway Development Corporation for planning permission.

Sunil Sahadevan, a planning officer at Newham council, said: "We are working towards the mosque application with the organisers and discussions are ongoing. The application will be finalised over the next year."

It is estimated that the project would cost more than £100m and donations are being sought from Britain and abroad.

Additional reporting: Tom Baird



LMC: Vision become reality

East London Mosque

London's oldest centre of Muslim worship launched an exciting new community project yesterday, marking a new and exciting chapter in London's cosmopolitan and diverse history. The London Muslim Centre is the largest Muslim and multi-purpose community and cultural centre in Western Europe and is set to provide a range of services to people of all faiths and none.

Shaykh Abdur-Rahman al-Sudais, the Imam of the Grand Mosque in Makkah (Ka'aba) – Islam's holiest mosque – formally opened the Centre today. Shaykh Al-Sudais said "I am very happy to see that the Muslim community in Britain has taken great steps towards achieving community cohesion and working in partnership with wider society. The East London Mosque and the new London Muslim Centre is the best testament to this"

HRH Prince of Wales sent a message of support – he was due to attend but was called away to President Reagan's funeral. Expressing his desire to re-visit the London Muslim Centre, Prince Charles (through a video message) praised the efforts of the local community for raising nearly half of the total cost (£10M), and stated "it seems to me that such bold endeavours deserve wider support and I can only hope that some of the city institutions and other funding bodies might perhaps be able to take up this challenge, which I think would do so much to encourage community self help projects elsewhere, as well as contributing to better understanding between communities here in London and elsewhere."

Trevor Phillips, Chair of the Commission for Racial Equality praised the contribution of British Muslims and welcomed the presence of an institution such as the London Muslim Centre. He said the CRE was committed in seeking equality for all and therefore would be supporting efforts of the Muslim community to bring about a change in legislation to provide British Muslims the same protection on par with other faith groups.

Home Office Minister Fiona McTaggert said the government accepted British Muslims concerns and that the government would consider ‘new legislation against incitement to religious hatred.' Mosque Honoury Secretary Muhammad Habibur Rahman commented on this saying that "inciting such hatred ought to be a criminal offence."

'...Welcoming guests at the launch of the London Muslim Centre, Dr. Muhammad Abdul Bari, (Chairman, East London Mosque), and Yaqoob Johnson, (Chairman London Muslim Centre Committee) emphasised that "the London Muslim Centre allows the Muslim community to lay firm roots in British society, by re-affirming its British identity.

British Muslims would need to continue to engage in the mainstream political, socio-cultural and economic life of Britain..."

27 Nov 2005


Some of the speakers at the launch

MIM: Speakers at the launch included the now Saudi Ambassador to the US -and former head of the Saudi security services Turki Al Faisal, who was an advisor to Osama Bin Laden. The fat bearded man in the middle is the leading Saudi cleric, Sheik Abdur Rahman Al Sudais, who called for the murder of Jews, and American worshippers of the cross on Saudi state televison, and is an employee of the Saudi government.


Inside the Tablighi Jamaat, a UK Islamic group with a mission

By Paul Lewis
Tuesday, Aug 22, 2006, Page 9

`A former body builder showed pictures on his mobile of the "pumped-up gym fanatic" he used to be. After spells in prison, he said, he went on a life-changing four-month trip to Pakistan.'

Thousands of young Muslim men are attending meetings in east London every week run by a fundamentalist Islamic movement believed by Western intelligence agencies to be used as a fertile recruiting ground by extremists.

Tablighi Jamaat, whose activities are being monitored by the security services, holds the tightly guarded meetings on an industrial estate close to the area where some of the suspects in the Aug. 10 terror raids were arrested.

Last week it emerged that at least seven of the 23 suspects under arrest on suspicion of involvement in the plot to blow up transatlantic airliners may have participated in Tablighi events.

The organization -- influenced by a branch of Saudi Arabian Islam known as Wahhabism -- has already been linked to two of the July 7 London suicide bombers who attended a Tablighi mosque at the organization's headquarters in Dewsbury, northeast England. The jailed shoe bomber Richard Reid is also known to have attended Tablighi meetings.

Until now, the leaders of Tablighi Jamaat -- which means "group of preachers" -- have refused to open their doors to outsiders, shrouding the organization in mystery.

Tablighi enthusiasts say that the organization, founded by a scholar in India in the 1920s, has no involvement with terrorism and simply encourages Muslims to follow the example of the prophet and proselytize the teachings of the Koran. As one sympathetic imam put it, they were the "Jehovah's Witnesses of Islam."

Last Thursday evening, we witnessed around 3,000 men from as far afield as Great Yarmouth (eastern England) and the Isle of Wight (southern England) stream through the back streets to the Stratford meeting.

There, at the gates of a seemingly derelict industrial site, men in fluorescent jackets waved those who are known to the Tablighi Jamaat hierarchy under a security barrier, and into one of three fields that surround a cluster of prefabricated buildings which form a temporary mosque.

As we entered the complex one person spoke admiringly about the "main man" for the southeast division of Tablighi Jamaat.

"We can't call him a prophet," he said. "No one can be a prophet. But when you meet him you'll realize. He's helped a lot of people in the area to follow the right path, the path of the prophet. He'll talk to you openly this evening and everything will make sense."

Seconds later, the main man stood next to his red van in Islamic dress and a smart blue waistcoat as hundreds of men, many carrying suitcases and sleeping bags, filed past him into a network of six rooms cobbled together with planks of wood and corrugated plastic windows.

The largest room was reserved for the main speaker, an elder from Preston (northwest England) who spoke in Urdu. His sermon was relayed through a microphone to five other rooms in which interpreters provided simultaneous translation into English, Arabic, Sinhala, Turkish and Somali.

Thoom heaved as a sea of faces, white, black and Asian, spilled into the hallway. Most were teenagers and men in their 20s and 30s dressed in Islamic dress, caps and beards. Some came in suits and ties, others in jeans and hoodies. There were old men too, who weaved slowly through to the front of the room, and a few young boys.

The main man took a seat in the middle of the room to interpret proceedings. The murmur of hundreds of whispering voices stopped as he put on his headphones.

"We come to submit our will to Allah," he began. "We have to live the life that Allah has prescribed for us. We have been invited into Allah's house."

He continued to translate the preacher's message.

"If a person is drowning, the man who saves him needs to take him out of the water. If he has swallowed too much water, that water must come out. At the moment we are in a worldly ocean and we are all drowning. For us to become successful, we must come out of this world for a short period of time," he said.

Although not a scholar, the interpreter is deeply respected. Quietly, some in the congregation whisper that he has seen miracles -- the sign of a truly committed Tablighi.

After an hour the preacher concluded with a call for followers to join the effort and commit to a trip away.

"We must leave our houses, our businesses, our families, for a short period of time, and follow the path of Allah and practice the ways of the prophet, going from mosque to mosque," the interpreter said. "Then [the behavior] will become second nature to us. We shall go to India and Pakistan for four months to follow these ways."

What Tablighi followers call "the effort" -- traveling around the country for three days or 10 days, depending on their level of commitment -- is key to the organization. Once they have completed the first stage, they may undertake a 40-day trip, which is likely to entail travel around Europe.

Finally, a Tablighi member will be given the opportunity to take a four-month journey to Pakistan or India. During their "efforts" members are encouraged to emulate the life of the prophet and show others "the path."

On domestic trips, members are sent to communities where they will have most leverage. Next month, for example, students will be sent to universities throughout the country.

Later in the evening, the rooms are transformed into dining halls. A small group of men who know several of the arrested suspects gathered round to share out plastic plates of chickpeas, lamb and naan bread, washed down with cans of peach juice and Coke.

"It will shock you but we all used to be deep into drugs and crime and all that," said one man, in his 20s, who went on a three- day trip to Woking, southwest of London, with one of the suspects arrested in last week's raids. "This area used to be a dodgy area. Tablighi changed all that."

A former body builder showed pictures on his mobile of the "pumped-up gym fanatic" he used to be. After spells in prison, he said, he went on a life-changing four-month trip to Pakistan.

"I went to places you wouldn't believe," he said. "There are people in Pakistan and India who know less about the prophet than people in east London."

The Urdu interpreter acknowledged that Tablighi Jamaat had roused suspicions.

"I know three or four people who come here regularly who are informants," he said.

"After Sept. 11 the security services met with our elders at our headquarters and told them that they keep the flight records of every Tablighi member who travels abroad. But we are not worried. They can close us down and it will not matter because the effort will continue. We have no fear," the interpreter said.

He said he was not worried about the suspect he knows best, a young man he recently took on a 40-day trip to Scotland.

"Anyone who suffers for Islam will be rewarded," he said.

Asked about the association between Tablighi Jamaat and terrorist groups, he replied: "Tablighi is like Oxford University. We have intelligent people -- doctors, solicitors, businessmen -- but one or two will become drug dealers, fraudsters. But you won't blame Oxford University for that. You see, it does not matter if someone speaks in favor or against this effort. Everything happens with the will of God."

Another follower added: "Sometimes the youngsters say that if they saw President [George W.] Bush they would chop his head off, and things like that. But we're discouraged from talking about politics. If elders say these things it is out of anger. They're not dangerous, they can't actually do anything."

By the early hours, 300 followers had volunteered for a three-day trip. One man who knows six of the suspects arrested last week leaned against the wall, the City of London glowing behind his shoulders, and adjusted his cap.

"Do you see now?" he said. "Tablighi is not the problem. It is the solution. It is another world in here, completely different from the world outside."

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