Freedom of speech for me, not you
Meanwhile, hosting Geert Wilders is anathema in the UK. By the way, those attending this al-Qaeda linked cleric’s speech “are required to register online and pay a fee up to Â£70 which goes towards ‘promoting Islam.'”
“Banned cleric of hate invited to rant in UK,” by David Pilditch for the Daily Express, April 11:
ANGER was growing last night after it was revealed that an Islamic extremist linked to Al Qaeda and the September 11 hijackers is to address a UK conference by video.
Muslim cleric Sheikh Anwar al-Awlaki has been banned from the United States after he was accused of using taped lectures to encourage terrorist attacks.
But the preacher of hate has been given the go-ahead to speak to an audience of hundreds at the three-day event in east London which is being held at a taxpayer-funded venue starting today.
Tower Hamlets council granted permission for the pre-recorded video message to be broadcast despite admitting it “obviously had some concerns”.
Last night the council released a statement saying the decision had been made after consultations with police and Home Office officials. But politicians accused Home Secretary Jacqui Smith of failing to take action to crack down on extremists.
American-born al-Awlaki has been banned from returning to the US following accusations he acted as a spiritual adviser to three of the 9/11 terrorists.
He now lives in the Yemen where he served 16 months in jail, during which he claims he was interrogated by the FBI.
The US Department of Homeland Security describes al-Awlaki as an “Al Qaeda supporter” who uses the internet to encourage terror attacks and urge Muslims worldwide to take up jihad.
Last night Shadow Security Minister Pauline Neville-Jones called for the meeting to be banned.
She called al-Awlaki “one of the most prominent English-language supporters of violent jihad”.
But Tower Hamlets said it had found “no grounds” to prohibit the event, at the Brady arts centre in Whitechapel.
A spokesman said: “We sought advice from the Home Office.
“These enquiries did not present us with grounds to prohibit playing of the message.”
Those attending are required to register online and pay a fee up to Â£70 which goes towards “promoting Islam”.