Saudi Arabia provides Jordan with equipment for airdrop of relief supplies in Gaza    Abha International Airport becomes Saudi Arabia's first silent airport    Lower part of Kaaba's kiswa raised ahead of Hajj    Hajj Ministry stops issuing Umrah permits through Nusuk App for a month    GASTAT: Saudi Arabia's non-oil exports surge 3.3% in Q1 of 2024    Arab leaders approve Riyadh as headquarters of Cybersecurity Ministers Council    Saudi Pro League to hold trophy award ceremony at Al Hilal's Kingdom Arena on Friday    'Hijra': A new cinematic exploration by Saudi filmmaker Shahad Ameen    9 dead, 54 injured as wind causes stage collapse at Mexico election rally    Biden looks to counter China's influence as he rolls out red carpet for Kenya    Czech court okays extradition of US murder plot accused    Pure beverages industry company launches the world's first German water treatment technology in cooperation with Krones AG Through its brands IVAL and OSKA    China starts military drills around Taiwan days after island swears in new leader    Court forces Angelina Jolie to release non-disclosure agreements    TCL Electronics introduces the latest QD-Mini LED TV and smart home appliances    Saudi Arabia completes 1st phase of desertification assessment with creating 246 maps    Syrian first lady Asma al-Assad diagnosed with leukemia, presidency announces    Oleksandr Usyk claims undisputed heavyweight title in 'Ring of Fire' match in Riyadh    Jorge Jesus praises Al Hilal's resilience after dramatic last-minute draw in Riyadh Derby    Star golfer Scottie Scheffler arrested over alleged assault on police officer    JK Rowling in 'arrest me' challenge over hate crime law    Trump's Bible endorsement raises concern in Christian religious circles    Hollywood icon Will Smith shares his profound admiration for Holy Qur'an    We have celebrated Founding Day for three years - but it has been with us for 300    Exotic Taif Roses Simulation Performed at Taif Rose Festival    Asian shares mixed Tuesday    Weather Forecast for Tuesday    Saudi Tourism Authority Participates in Arabian Travel Market Exhibition in Dubai    Minister of Industry Announces 50 Investment Opportunities Worth over SAR 96 Billion in Machinery, Equipment Sector    HRH Crown Prince Offers Condolences to Crown Prince of Kuwait on Death of Sheikh Fawaz Salman Abdullah Al-Ali Al-Malek Al-Sabah    HRH Crown Prince Congratulates Santiago Peña on Winning Presidential Election in Paraguay    SDAIA Launches 1st Phase of 'Elevate Program' to Train 1,000 Women on Data, AI    41 Saudi Citizens and 171 Others from Brotherly and Friendly Countries Arrive in Saudi Arabia from Sudan    Saudi Arabia Hosts 1st Meeting of Arab Authorities Controlling Medicines    General Directorate of Narcotics Control Foils Attempt to Smuggle over 5 Million Amphetamine Pills    NAVI Javelins Crowned as Champions of Women's Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) Competitions    Saudi Karate Team Wins Four Medals in World Youth League Championship    Third Edition of FIFA Forward Program Kicks off in Riyadh    Evacuated from Sudan, 187 Nationals from Several Countries Arrive in Jeddah    SPA Documents Thajjud Prayer at Prophet's Mosque in Madinah    SFDA Recommends to Test Blood Sugar at Home Two or Three Hours after Meals    SFDA Offers Various Recommendations for Safe Food Frying    SFDA Provides Five Tips for Using Home Blood Pressure Monitor    SFDA: Instant Soup Contains Large Amounts of Salt    Mawani: New shipping service to connect Jubail Commercial Port to 11 global ports    Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Delivers Speech to Pilgrims, Citizens, Residents and Muslims around the World    Sheikh Al-Issa in Arafah's Sermon: Allaah Blessed You by Making It Easy for You to Carry out This Obligation. Thus, Ensure Following the Guidance of Your Prophet    Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques addresses citizens and all Muslims on the occasion of the Holy month of Ramadan    







Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.



Awards balance media's distorted view of Britain's Muslims
By Susannah Tarbush
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 13 - 04 - 2009

Events in Britain over the past week have highlighted once again, the difficulties facing British Muslims as a result of the terror threat to Britain. The arrest of 12 men – 11 of them Pakistanis who are overwhelmingly on student visas – and Prime Minister Gordon Brown's statement on a “very big” terror plot, have revived suspicions about the UK's Muslim community.
Some tabloid newspapers these days only have to place the word ‘Muslim' in a headline for the reader to know the story will be sensational and mostly negative. The media tend to give prominence to the threatening statements of extremist loudmouths, while largely ignoring the realities and diversity of the bulk of Britain's approximately two million Muslims.
Two recent awards ceremonies have helped put British Muslims in a positive perspective. They were antidotes to the clichés peddled in some sections of the press, and by certain politicians, of British Muslims failing to integrate and of contributing little to society.
The Muslim News Awards ceremony, held in London and attended by some 800 guests, provided evidence-galore of the productive role Britain's Muslims are playing across the board in cultural, scientific and community life.
At the same time, a separate contest to find the most powerful Muslim woman in Britain was won by the feisty Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion and Social Action. The contest was organized by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), in association with the Times newspaper and Emel Muslim lifestyle magazine. The organizers published Britain's first-ever annual Muslim Women Power List, naming a shortlist of 13 people. The judges announced their choice of Baroness Warsi at a dinner in Manchester in the North of England.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of The Muslim News, which launched the annual Muslim News Awards for Excellence nine years ago. In his speech at the awards ceremony, the monthly newspaper's editor Ahmed J. Versi warned against the criminalization of a whole community because of terror attacks “carried out by a minute number of people”. He indicated that such criminalization risks marginalizing and increasing the alienation of young Muslims, and there is a danger that violent extremists will use this “to lure them in”.
Versi's message was addressed to an audience that included Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, Communities Secretary Hazel Blears, Communities Minister Sadiq Khan, and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg.
The Guest of Honor, outgoing head of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop of Westminster, said: “The dazzling array of nominees gives a humbling but heart-warming picture of so many remarkable initiatives, some of which show tremendous skill in fields as varied as music and medicine, and others that prove how hard so many people are working to build hope in communities around Britain and further afield.”
Nominations for the awards were submitted by readers of The Muslim News. A panel of seven judges drew up the shortlists and chose the final winners. Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor presented the Alhambra Award for Excellence in the Arts to the Baghdad-born master of the oud Ahmed Mukhtar, who since 1990 has performed, toured and taught throughout the Middle East and Europe. He has composed music for theatre, film and TV, and four CDs of his performances have been released.
The graffiti artist Mohammed Ali was shortlisted for the Alhambra Award and won the Iman wa Amal Judges' Special Award. His “aerosol Arabic” style fuses classical Islamic calligraphy and urban street graffiti.
The Allama Iqbal Award for Creativity in Islamic Thought, sponsored by the Foreign Office, was presented by Sadiq Khan to Professor Muhammad A. S. Abdel Haleem of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London University. Abdel Haleem's latest work, “The Qur'an: A New Translation” published by Penguin, has become a bestseller.
The Sankore University Award for Excellence in Education, sponsored by the charity Muslim Hands, went to Zafar Shah Iqbal. Iqbal helped found the Southwark Muslim Women's Association, focusing on education as a means of empowering Muslim women. Professor Mohamed El-Gomati of University of York won the Fazlur Rahman Khan Award for Excellence in Engineering, Science or Technology. Some of the awards are designed to encourage the young. Fifteen-year-old freestyle karate and kickboxing expert Imran Sidat won the Imams Hasan and Husayn Children's Award for Excellence.
The Malcolm X Young Person's Award for Excellence, went to Faizaan Ahmed. As an 18-year-old A-level student, Ahmed was moved by the murder of his 19-year-old sister in November 2007 to found The Halimah Trust (THT). The trust aims to raise £108,000 by the end of the year to build a secondary school for orphan girls in Pakistan.
In the field of entrepreneurship, shadow justice secretary Dominic Grieve awarded the Ummul Mu'minin Khadijah Award for Excellence in Enterprise to the Muslim Enterprise Development Service (MEDS).
The awards place much emphasis on community work. Hazel Blears presented the Uthman Dan Fodio Award for Excellence in Community Development, sponsored by her department, to two joint winners: Black and Asian Service in Alcohol and Narcotics (BASIAN), and Shereen Williams, Director of the Council of Ethnic Minority Voluntary Sector Organisations.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith handed the Home Office-sponsored Al Biruni Award for Excellence in Community Relations to Ikram Malik, a founding member of Building Bridges Pendle and the Lancashire Forum of Faiths.
Faezeh Hashemi, President of the Islamic Federation of Women Sport, had travelled from Iran to present the Faezeh Hashemi Award for Excellence in Sport to the Muslim Women's Sport Foundation.
The Ibn Battuta Award for fair, accurate and balanced reporting on an issue involving Muslims went jointly to 29-year-old Mehdi Hasan, the youngest commissioning editor at Channel 4 TV, and British journalist and famous convert to Islam: Yvonne Ridley.
Not every recipient of a prize was a Muslim. Reverend Gilleasbuig MacMillan, Minister of St Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, won the Annemarie Schimmel Award for Championing a Muslim Cause in recognition of his determined initiatives over many years to welcome Muslims to his cathedral.
The Muslim News Awards revealed the vital part that Muslims are playing in many fields of activity across the UK. The near-simultaneous choice of Baroness Warsi as the most powerful Muslim woman in Britain illustrates the increasing Muslim presence at high political level.


Clic here to read the story from its source.