Cameron promises to the isolate hostile Muslim groups

David Cameron will today promise to isolate Muslim groups that express hostility to the western values, in a uncompromising speech in which he argues that Islamic extremism must be countered by a new “muscular liberalism”.

Mr Cameron will claim that state multiculturalism has failed and that society and governments have in the past shown a “hands-off tolerance” that accepts or even encourages groups that don't share British values.

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, Mr Cameron says young Islamic men must be given a feeling of belonging. “They find it hard to identify with Britain because we have allowed the weakening of our collective identity,” he will say.

Mr Cameron’s rejection of multiculturalism – with societies living side by side – and advocacy of British values is a continuation of an agenda pursued by Labour, particularly after the 2005 public transport bombings in London.

But the prime minister will go a step further in focusing on people and groups who explicitly reject violence, but whom he believes provide a climate in which militant extremism can flourish. “Islam is a religion observed peacefully and devoutly by over a billion people,” he will say. “Islamist extremism is a political ideology, supported by a minority.” He says that at one end of the spectrum are those who back terrorism.

“Move along the spectrum and you find people who may reject violence, but who accept various parts of the extremist world view including real hostility towards western democracy and liberal values.”

Mr Cameron doesn't identify by name groups to the “non-violent extremist” category, but suggests they may condone or at least not condemn practices such as forced marriage. “Some organisations that seek to present themselves as a gateway to the Muslim community are showered with public money despite doing little to combat extremism,” he will say.

“So let’s properly judge these organisations. Do they believe in universal human rights – including for women and people of other faiths? Do they believe in equality of all before the law? Do they believe in democracy and the right of people to elect their own government? Do they encourage integration or separatism.”

Mr Cameron’s “muscular liberalism” would ensure groups failing these tests would receive no public money, wouldn't share public platforms with ministers and could face bans from universities and prisons. The approach was drawn up in consultation with Lady Warsi, Conservative co-chairman and the first Muslim woman to sit it in the cabinet.

A review of the government’s strategy for preventing violent extremism was announced by Theresa May, home secretary, last Nov-ember. The review of Prevent, overseen by Lord Carlile, will assess how the government’s counter-terrorism programme can work more effectively. The conclusions will inform a strategy to be published this year.

Mr Cameron’s presence at the Munich conference follows appearances by William Hague, foreign secretary, and Liam Fox, defence secretary, all anxious to dispel suggestions that spending cuts will lead to Britain playing a diminished global role.

“This is a complete reversal of the truth,” Mr Cameron will tell the gathering of world security figures. “Yes we're dealing with the deficit, but we're also making sure our defences are strong. We still have the fourth-largest military budget in the world.”


Post a Comment

Age Calculator

Date  Month  Year

You have been living for:
In months:
In days:
In hours:
In minutes:
Your next birthday will be in:

Subscribe here