Boris Johnson has approved payments to the “Muslim Safety Forum” (MSF) to the tune of over £30 thousand of tax payers money since his election last May despite the founding chairman of that organisation, Mr Azad Ali, being suspended from his job as a Treasury civil servant for his extremist views.
On his personal blog, Ali praises the spiritual leader of al Qaeda, denied the Mumbai attacks were “terrorism” and approvingly quoted a statement advocating the killing of British troops in Iraq.
He also criticised those Muslims who “tell people that Islam is a religion of peace.” Mr Ali went on to describe non-Muslims as “sinners” and said Muslims should “hate non-Muslims disbelieving actions.”
Mr Ali was suspended from his job as a civil servant in January after some of his views came to the attention of his employers. However, City Hall payment lists published by a London newspaper show that his organisation received the latest of its £10,000 quarterly payments from the GLA.
It also received £10,000 in July and October last year, as well as at least £70,000 under the previous Mayor, Ken Livingstone. Its annual general meeting, in July, was addressed by Johnson’s deputy mayor, Richard Barnes.
Mr Ali’s comments are made on his “Between the Lines” blog, hosted by the Islamic Forum Europe, a leading Islamist organisation closely associated with the radical East London Mosque. The Muslim Safety Forum is based at the mosque.
On 20 November last year, Mr Ali wrote in praise of Abdullah Azzam, Osama bin Laden’s key mentor. Mr Ali describes Azzam as one of the “few Muslims who promote the understanding of the term jihad in its comprehensive glory” as both a doctrine of “self-purification” and of “warfare.” He adds: “Abdullah Azzam promoted that balance yet today he is viewed by some as a ‘terrorist.’
In the same post, Mr Ali quotes Azzam’s son, Huthaifa, as saying: “If I saw an American or British man wearing a soldier’s uniform inside Iraq, I would kill him because that is my obligation… I respect this as the main instruction in my religion for jihad.” Mr Ali adds: “There are some Muslims who go out of their way to deny the full meaning and understanding of the term jihad.”