Website of Islamic charity hosted articles advocating death for gay people and apostates
Posted: Mon, 20 Jul 2015
Content on the website of the Islamic Network, a registered charity, referred to homosexuality as a "sick disease" and 'legitimised' the killing of gay people.
The website of Islamic Network, which is no longer accessible, hosted articles (posted in 2003 and 2004) on "reasons for shedding" the "blood of a Muslim", which included apostasy, and called for homosexuals to be put to death.
The article on the permissibility of killing other Muslims said "to all those who apostate from [Islam], by whichever method this may occur… it then becomes obligatory on the Muslims to kill him unless he returns to [Islam]."
The posts hosted on the charity's website said it was acceptable to kill another Muslim for adultery, murder and for leaving Islam.
In another post on the website, homosexuality was described as a "perverted sexual behaviour" and an "evil and filthy practice"
The penalty for homosexuality is execution "by being thrown from a great height", the author of the article wrote. The post says that gay people should be "destroyed by fire", pushed from a "great height" and "stoned to death". The latter two punishments have both been used by Islamic State for homosexuality.
An inquiry by the Charity Commission noted that none of the current trustees were in place when the posts were put online, and that when they were made aware of it "they acted immediately to take down the website so it could no longer be viewed."
The trustees then issued a statement which said: "Shortly after joining Islamic Network, in 2013, the chair, introduced clear and unequivocal policies against extremism and hate covering all activities. Since then we have been sifting through website articles uploaded by volunteers and removing those that we consider fall foul of this policy."
Additionally, the inquiry found that while material was hosted on the website, "there was no mechanism in place by the trustees to vet the content before publication."
However, the Charity Commission found that "trustees' were too slow in implementing their policies against extremism and hate and the process of reviewing and sifting existing material was too slow."
Additionally, material was found which "encouraged violence and denigrated particular faiths." The Commission said "this was not appropriate material for a charity to promote and publish" and accused the Islamic Network of a "lack of due diligence" relating to material hosted on their website.
While the material was "historic", and the charity "acted quickly" when alerted to the posts attacking homosexuals and apostates, the "website should have been monitored on a regular basis to ensure that its content was appropriate," the inquiry found, "bearing in mind [Islamic Network's] charitable objects and the trustee's duties."
According to the Charity Commission, the "sole object" of the charity is "the advancement of the Islamic religion."