"Muslims Don’t Need To Apologise For Extremists, We Need To Stand Up To Them"
5 June 2017, 17:10 | Updated: 5 June 2017, 17:24
Maajid Nawaz tells Iain Dale fellow Muslims must stand up to and report extremists as they expect the rest of society to stand up to racists.
After Saturday’s attack on London Bridge some are asking why isn’t the condemnation from the Muslim community greater?
LBC weekend presenter Maajid Nawaz addressed this on Iain Dale’s drive show and said condemnation isn’t enough.
“As I tell my fellow Muslims, it’s not that we’re responsible for apologising for terrorists. It’s just like as I expect you Iain to call out racism when and how you hear it, as you often do on your show, likewise I should reciprocate and speak out against extremism.
“You’re not responsible for racists and I’m not responsible for terrorists, but we are both responsible for standing hand in hand against all forms of bigotry in society.”
Iain suggested that while that might be true, it doesn’t seem to work like that: “some Muslims are complicit, not delibretly, but by omission because they don’t report on these extremists.”
Maajid agreed and looked at it from the other angle: “How would we feel, my fellow Muslims, if you turned around whenever you heard racism and anti-Muslim bigotry and said ‘I’m not going to condemn that, how can I be responsible for that? I’m not going to apologise for something not done in my name.’
“We wouldn’t feel welcome by you.”
Maajid, who is the co-founder of the Quilliam counter-extremism organisation, nailed the key point that underlines all of this and which everyone must understand if we are going to live in a cohesive society.
“Not only do we have rights in this society, we also have responsibilities.”