Terrorism apologists who called Jihadi John a ‘beautiful young man’ have been accused of scaremongering after warning Muslims that police will use new anti-terror legislation to take their children away.
Asim Qureshi, research director for the ‘human rights’ group Cage, made the comments during a nationwide tour about the recently-introduced Counter-Terrorism and Security (CTS) Act.
The group held talks in seven cities across the country including Leicester, Sheffield, Bradford and London.
Asim Qureshi, research director for the ‘human rights’ group Cage, has been accused of scaremongering after warning Muslims that police will use new anti-terror legislation to take their children away
Mr Qureshi claimed the Government would consider taking away children as young as seven if they attended demonstrations by the Stop The War group, which campaigns against what it sees as unjust wars, or repeated political slogans in schools.
At the Bradford meeting on Wednesday, Mr Qureshi said: ‘There is a little sub-clause in the CTS Act that says the Government can consider avenues under health and social services.
Cage attracted criticism in February after it was revealed it had been in close contact with Mohammed Emwazi, also known as IS executioner Jihadi John (above)
‘How I read that is if you don’t consent to deradicalisation programmes, we are going to take your kids away from you – and force you to consent to these programmes for your children.
‘That’s what the Bill allows them to do. The end conclusion is that, without giving our consent, they will start thinking about taking our children away from us.
‘That for me has been the most dangerous part of this Act.’
Mr Qureshi’s comments were widely criticised. Nazir Afzal, the former chief Crown prosecutor for North-West England, said the remarks amounted to ‘scaremongering, pure and simple’.
He said: ‘It is possible to read every bit of legislation in any way you want to, but we need to get real.
Taking a child away from their parents is the last thing the State wants to do.’
A Conservative spokesman said the comments were lies, adding: ‘This is, frankly, outrageous scaremongering.’ Labour said Mr Qureshi’s claims didn’t ‘bear scrutiny or come close to reality’.
Cage attracted criticism in February after it was revealed it had been in close contact with Mohammed Emwazi, also known as IS executioner Jihadi John.
Mr Qureshi gave a press conference at which he described Emwazi as a ‘beautiful young man’ who was ‘extremely gentle’.