Extreme Islamic group ‘could be banned’
By Abul Taher
AN ISLAMIC extremist group that called for jihad during an antiIsrael rally could be banned by the Government, The Mail on Sunday has been told.
Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT) – whose leader Abdul Wahid was exposed by the MoS as being a GP who kept his other identity secret – escaped bans during the premierships of Tony Blair and David Cameron.
But now it is believed civil servants commissioned by the Home Office to review the group have recommended that it be proscribed on extremism grounds.
Home Secretary James Cleverly is considering whether to impose the ban, which would be the first proscription of a British Islamist group in 17 years.
If the Government bans the group, then being a member could lead to a jail term of up to 14 years, and those affiliated with it could have bank accounts and assets frozen.
It is understood officials made their recommendation after seeing the public outrage over protests outside the Egyptian embassy in October and Hizb ut-Tahrir’s leaders calling for jihad against Israel.
One well-placed source said: ‘Proscription is being looked at, but another aspect being looked at is whether the law should be changed so that people cannot hold protests like that again.’
Leaders of HT gave speeches outside the Egyptian embassy two weeks after the October 7 Hamas attacks on Israel.
One speaker shouted at supporters: ‘What is the solution to liberate people in the concentration camp called Palestine?’ They chanted back: ‘Jihad! Jihad! Jihad!’
HT – believed to be the UK’s largest Islamic extremist organisation, with membership of a few thousand – is already banned in Germany and a host of Islamic countries.
Last night, an HT spokesman said: ‘While the British Government’s actions remain uncertain, it’s essential to recognise that while political parties can be proscribed, ideas persist beyond such measures.
‘Political discourse and the pursuit of justice endure, even in challenging circumstances.’
The Home Office said: ‘While the Government keeps the list of proscribed organisations under review, we do not comment on whether a specific organisation is or is not being considered for proscription.’
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