UK: Islamic group slams 'out of touch' imams

UK: Islamic group slams 'out of touch' imams

Young Muslims are being pushed towards extremism because their mosques are run by elderly and out-of-touch cliques, a report by an Islamic think-tank said yesterday.

The Quilliam Foundation, an anti-extremist Islamic organisation, accused imams of failing to teach and preach in English and of shutting women out of their mosques.

Only about 3 per cent of Muslim clerics were born in this country and most do not have full command of English, the study said.

The report said that mosque leaderships did not promote British values and allowed young people to drift towards jihadists who speak their own language.

The group called on the Government for stricter limits on visas for Islamic clerics coming to Britain and for an end to state grants for mosques that do not have at least one imam who preaches in English and supports the principles of democracy.

The Quilliam Foundation - which has been backed with almost £1million of taxpayers' money and attacked by some Islamic groups as being a mouthpiece for the Government - also said madrassas, mosques' equivalent of Christian Sunday schools, should be fully inspected by local children's services officials.

The survey was based on responses to five questions given by 512 mosques last autumn.

It found 97 per cent of imams were born overseas and 92 per cent were trained abroad, while more than half of the Muslims in Britain were born here.

'The religious leadership in the vast majority of Britain's mosques are not in full command of the English language, and are likely to be ill-equipped to address the real concerns and everyday experiences of young British Muslims,' the report found.

Nearly half, 44 per cent, of mosques do not hold their Friday lectures or sermons in English, the survey said. A similar proportion have no space for women, and their managements take the view that it is unnecessary for women to come to pray.


Source: Daily Mail (English), h/t PI News

For more on the Quilliam Foundation:
* UK: New foundation against Islamist extremism
* UK: Muslims warn PM Gaza conflict fuelling anger

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