A mosque in Cobridge is hosting a lecture in response to the London Bridge attack exactly a week ago today.
The Masjid Abi Hurairah mosque, of North Road, Stoke-on-Trent is advertising the event to people of all faith, writing: “Non Muslims and Muslims all welcome”.
The event, scheduled to begin at 7.30pm, will feature special guest speaker Abu Khadeejah Abdul-Waahid. It will also be broadcast live on Sunnah Radio.
On Twitter a spokesperson for the mosque said: “The aim of the lecture is to educate Muslims and non-Muslims alike that TERRORISM IS NEVER ISLAMIC.
“We believe education is vital for the prevention of such extremist ideologies taking root in the first place. We also believe that you cannot root out extremism without education.
“No de-radicalization agenda will succeed without undoing the misinterpretations and out of context understandings of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. It requires knowledge-based interactions: lectures, study circles, literature and dialogue to change the hearts and minds.
“We do not and will not shy away from confronting those ideologies and their proponents.”
Usman Khan established a regular stall outside the Territorial Army centre in Cobridge, handing out and preaching on al-Muhajiroun backed material.
Witnesses of these early stalls, including former classmates of Khan’s, recall seeing black ISIS flags draped across their tables. The flag, now a recognisable part of ISIS and a symbol of terrorism worldwide, was designed in 2006 and as such wasn’t instantly recognisable to the public. Before being associated with radical extremism, it was associated with radical Islamic preaching on stalls like Khan’s.
Usman Khan did not attend the Stoke mosque hosting this event.
The London Bridge attack last week saw two killed and three injured. The victims were announced as 25-year-old Jack Merritt and 23-year-old Saskia Jones.
A special report produced by StaffsLive this week learned that the major al-Muhajiroun training camp for UK fighters was located just hours away from the Khan family compound in Pakistan he visited in 2004, and immediately after returning to the UK the London Bridge attacker began associations with al-Muhajiroun terrorists, became a member of the now-proscribed terror group, and in Cobridge he set up a weekly stall handing out material backed by the group.
Before he flew out, he didn’t have links to the terror group, didn’t have friends from within the group, and was described as shy in school by his classmates. This all changed immediately after his return.