The Courier letters page, 9 November 2006
Sir,—We write this letter in relation to The Courier headline and the first paragraph in the article, Dundee Muslims urged not to help police unit, November, 7. We feel they do not represent the issues raised at Taking Liberties, Monday, November 6.
We fully support the meeting and its objectives which were to highlight the covert operations of Special Branch in Dundee and to inform individuals within the community of their civil liberties and legal responsibilities.
Ask yourself what image is being projected to the public by reading the headlines alone? Your headline does not represent the Dundee Muslims and will throw suspicion on a community already under attack from the press. The media have an added responsibility in community relations, yet your headline and the first paragraph serves no purpose but to alienate the good community relations that Dundee Muslims have with other Dundonians.
We believe strongly in resisting any possible causes of terrorism. However, we will not co-operate with intimidating tactics used by Special Branch, through visits to homes and businesses of Dundee Muslims. The current situation has left Muslims in the community afraid to visit their local mosque, take part in the political process and reluctant to send their children to youth groups for fear they will be approached by the police.
The headline and paragraph used implies that Dundee Muslims are unwilling to help the police with inquiries. This is not the case. We urge all Muslims to be law abiding and to co-operate with the authorities. Not only is this a legal responsibility, it is also a religious and moral duty.
The three mosques in Dundee are representative of the Muslim community.
Mohammed Razaq, Victoria Road Mosque
Bashir Chohan, Dundee Central Mosque
Talat Mehmood, Cultural and Islamic Centre, All Dundee