Rafiq Hayat, national president of the moderate Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, says that moderate Muslims fear and despise Islamic State barbarism just as much as the rest of the British public.Security at the community’s huge mosque in Morden, Surrey, which can house 10,000 worshippers, has been stepped up to airport standards with metal and bomb detectors amid threats against the moderates in Britain and around the world.Now Mr Hayat says that it is time for responsible Muslims to react against radicalisation in the same way as the Roman Catholic church once ex-communicated wrong doers.
Kenyan born Mr Hayat is a leading light in the community, which has tens of millions of followers in the world.
Speaking shortly before Friday prayers at their headquarters, the Baitul Futuh Mosque in Morden, Mr Hayat told how after the slaughter in Tunisia he wrote to Prime Minister David Cameron to express his sympathy over the “appalling and abhorrent” act.
Mr Hayat said his thoughts are now turning to how to deal with the families of Muslims who have been radicalised by extremists in their homes or at mosques.
Mr Hayat told the Sunday Express: “We have to look at how we treat them.‘I am not saying they should be criminalised but certainly there has to be some action against people who are radicalising their own children.“There has to be some sanction of some kind. Nobody can stop people going to the mosque. Everybody has the right to go and pray.“There should be pressure from within the community.”Ex-communication can happen in the muslim community.“You ex-communicate them from the social circle,” he said. “That is one way of making the individual know“They can come to the mosque but they cannot mingle with the larger community.
“They have to feel they have done something wrong before being taken back into the fold. That is one possible way of dealing with it.”
The Sunday Express was invited to see the improved to Friday prayers so see the security arrangements following the Tunisia outrage.Some 30 security staff check vehicles entering the mosque site and use mirorrs to look for bombs underneath cars in vehicles they do not recognis.Anyone carrying a bag or any electrical equipment has to leave it in a safe room well away from the mosque.All community members are asked to carry an ID card bearing their name, a bar code and their photograph.The world head of the community, His Holiness Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, addressed worshippers on Friday and urged them to lead peaceful lives
In response to the attacks in Tunisia, France and Kuwait last week he told the Sunday Expresst: “Such attacks have no place in the world and are completely contrary to the true and peaceful teachings of Islam.
All true and peace-loving Muslims are grieved by the fact that the perpetrators of such crimes seeks to justify their hate-filled and cruel acts in the name of Islam and its Prophet (peace be upon him).
“On behalf of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, I extend my heartfelt sympathies and prayers to all the victims and their families. May God grant them patience at this difficult time.”