Muslims unite to condemn 'extreme depravity' of child grooming in first UK-wide single sermon
500 Imams will deliver the unprecedented address following several abuse cases involving Muslim men
Oliver Duggan has a BA in Politics and Parliamentary Studies from the University of Leeds and an MA in Newspaper Journalism from City University London. He works as a freelance reporter and editorial assistant for The Independent and i with a focus on Home Affairs and politics.
Friday 28 June 2013
Imams across Britain will today deliver a sermon denouncing the practice of grooming following a series of sexual abuse cases involving Muslims.
The religious speech, which will be read out in 500 mosques, opens with a reading from the Koran that prohibits “sexual indecency, wickedness and oppression of others” and continues to urge congregations to report suspected cases of child abuse.
It is reportedly the first time a single sermon will be delivered in unison across the UK and is organised by campaign group Together Against Grooming with the support of the Muslim Council and Islamic Society of Britain.
The effort comes after the convictions of Muslim men in a string of cases including those in Rochdale, Derby and Oxford, where five men were yesterday sentenced to life in prison for their involvement in a sex abuse gang.
Speaking at their sentencing, Judge Peter Rook told them they committed “exceptionally grave crimes” against girls and that demonstrated “extreme depravity”.
“You targeted the young girls because they were vulnerable, under-age and out of control,” he said.
Ansar Ali, spokesperson for Together Against Grooming, said the group was horrified by recent court cases, adding: “As Muslims, we feel a natural responsibility to condemn and tackle this crime.
"This is the start of what will be a nationwide project in which we seek to work with others to eradicate this practice from all communities."
The sermon’s author, Alyas Karmani, an imam and youth worker in Keighley, West Yorkshire, told the BBC there was a "profound disrespect culture" in the treatment of women.
"Access to pornography, which also objectifies women, is creating a culture where men are now ambiguous when it comes to the issue of violence against women," he said.
Others involved in the sermon’s broadcast at midday prayers today have been keen to ensure sexual abuse is not disproportionately linked to Asian Muslim men.
Shaykh Ibrahim Mogra, an imam and scholar who will deliver the speech at a mosque in Leicester, told The Guardian: "This is an abhorrent issue that spares no race, religion, as perpetrators or victims. We are not required to do this; it is our religious and civic duty. The Koran calls on us to speak out against injustice."
"It is important to do it this way to have a national impact throughout many congregations. We hope to create a debate."
Jennifer Lawrence attacks mass media again over body image
Paris charity auction staged to save the ancient city of Tyre
scienceScientists find the answer to a question that even puzzled Darwin
A very timely Great Train Robbery and a frantic 24 Hours in A&E among the highlights
arts + entsThe 'Friends' actor on his new role as campaigner on addiction issues
Jennifer Lawrence: 'It should be illegal to call someone fat on TV'
Colin Farrell reveals ‘affair’ with Elizabeth Taylor: 'She was my last romantic relationship'
Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
Devyani Khobragade: India-US row escalates over arrest of diplomat in New York
Peter O'Toole: Tales of the late film icon
Exclusive: Young people ‘want UK to stay in Europe’: Four in 10 adults aged 18 to 24 are ‘firmly in favour’ of membership, poll shows
Fox News presenter tells viewers it is a 'fact' that both Jesus and Santa Claus are white
You can STILL be jailed for being a republican, government confirms, and it remains illegal to even 'imagine' overthrowing the Queen
Kiss and yell: Italian protester charged with sexual assault after kissing riot police officer
Fighting back: the woman giving a voice (and 49,999 others) to the victims of sexism - by giving an airing to their horror stories
PM denies two child limit for benefits is part of Tory welfare policy
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 4 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber announces he's 'retiring from music'
- 5 Children evacuated from swimming pool after prosthetic leg mistaken for paedophile
- < Previous
- Next >
Negotiable: Capita Education Resourcing Permanent Team: Chemistry Teacher requ...
£Attractive Package: Citifocus: Senior project manager with Fund Data experien...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Fantastic Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: A top i...
£30000 - £45000 per annum: Pro-Recruitment Group: Recruiting at a rapid rate o...