An imam in Birmingham has sparked controversy by branding the Queen a “disgusting woman“.
Shaykh Asrar Rashid criticised the monarch for knighting author Salman Rushdie, whose novel The Satanic Verses outraged muslims and left him under a fatwah death threat.
His comments came during a BBC WM interview in which he also said Muslims should not fight for Britain in the Armed Forces.
He said they should refuse to serve on conscientious grounds due to British troops presence in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Mr Rashid, who lives in Sparkbrook, makes his living as a visiting cleric, preaching at mosques around Birmingham.
He said: If a foreign government invaded England tomorrow we, as Muslims, would defend these areas and our way of life.
Its not that I hate English people, or English soldiers who have gone abroad, or that I dont feel for the mothers of these soldiers.
But the fact is they should make conscientious decisions as well. We must only fight wars which are in our interest, and invading Iraq and then oppressing the Iraqi people and Afghani people, is not the English way.
In Sparkbrook’s Muslim community, it is unlikely that the imam’s views would even register let alone be considered controversial. But what does the Muslim Council of Britain, who pride themselves as representative of Muslim opinion anywhere and everywhere in the UK, have to say about this man’s views?
The Muslim Council of Britain distanced itself from the imams views. A spokesman said they were not representative.
He said that disrespecting the Queen, as the British head of state, was a disgusting thing for a Muslim to do. As Muslims we are ready to show respect to leaders. We may disagree with some of the things she might do and say but that does not give us the right to be insulting to her, the spokesman said.
In other words, the Muslim Council of Britain has identical views to the imam but they would never express them in such “insulting” terms. Would that be correct?