Release International
Release International

A former Imam is warning that extremists are aiming to establish sharia law in the UK - and that Britain has become the world 'number one target' for Islamic strategists.

Sharia law - strict Islamic law - is gaining ground in many nations, resulting in a challenge to basic human freedoms. In Pakistan a bill that would impose the death penalty on any Muslim man who changes his faith has passed its first reading. A Muslim woman who converted to another faith would face life imprisonment.

Sam Solomon, a former Imam and Islamic lawyer now living in the West, raises concerns of creeping Islamisation in the UK. He has written a special report on Islam in the latest edition of Witness magazine, published by the Christian ministry to the persecuted church Release International.

He writes: 'The UK is the number one target of Islamic strategies in the West (because) the former British Empire controlled some of the largest Muslim communities. Immigrants from these countries... have taken full advantage of Britain's liberal politics.'

Sam Solomon raises concerns that the militants' aim is to establish sharia law in the UK, applying first to Muslim communities, then extending to the entire population.

'It would be a huge mistake to say that Islam is just another religion like Judaism or Christianity,' he writes. 'Islam is a whole system: a social, political, religious, economical, educational, legislative, judicial and military system... with regulations that govern every aspect of the lives of its adherents.'

Where sharia law has been applied in Pakistan, Christians have been accused of blasphemy and girls and women face abduction and forced conversion. In Nigeria, extremists have burnt churches and targeted and killed Christians.

'From Afghanistan to Algeria, Indonesia to Iran, at best there is the insidious daily obstruction of the rights of Christians by marginalising them to a low citizenship status, especially when it comes to jobs, or a place at university,' writes Sam Solomon.

A photograph in Witness magazine vividly portrays what can happen. A young woman hides her face as four grim-faced policemen clad in black escort her from her home. Her shame is obvious. Her friends watch anxiously as she is led away to face charges.

The place is Banda Aceh, Indonesia. The woman's crime, for which she faces humiliation and the full force of the law? Failing to wear an Islamic headscarf. The police are Islamic law enforcement officers. Their task is to enforce sharia law, with its strict rules on dress, alcohol consumption and sexual behaviour.

'We receive daily reports of the persecution of Christians in Islamic nations, especially where Sharia law - strict Islamic law - applies' says Andy Dipper, Release International's CEO. 'We should be concerned about the increase of Islamic influence in our society because we love truth and righteousness and the freedom to worship God - not because we are afraid'. CR

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.