The founder of an organisation which records Islamophobic attacks is engaged in a legal battle with a Jewish woman who he claims defamed him on Twitter.
Fiyaz Mughal has threatened libel proceedings against Israel supporter Ambrosine Chetrit after she allegedly criticised the Tell Mama group. He has accused her of siding with the anti-Islamic English Defence League.
Speaking publicly about the case for the first time this week, Mrs Chetrit said: “I am not anti-Muslim, I am not an EDL supporter, I just want to be able to say that I support Israel without the abuse that I received.”
Mrs Chetrit, a music publicist, has around 23,600 followers on the social media site.
Tell Mama was set up to help British Muslims report discrimination, and to monitor incidents in a similar way to the Community Security Trust’s recording of antisemitism. Israel activist Sir Trevor Chinn is among its patrons, and CST works closely with the group.
Mr Mughal said the Jewish community was Tell Mama’s “greatest ally”.
Referring to the case, he said: “It has nothing to do with people’s views on Israel. It has nothing to do with people’s views on Islamic radicalism. It’s a question of defending our reputation in relation to what she has said.”
The tweets in question were sent in September last year and February this year. In one, Mrs Chetrit allegedly likened Tell Mama to the Stasi and claimed the group was “trying to close down pro-Israel accounts” on Twitter. Mr Mughal’s lawyer, Dr Farooq Bajwa, said she had also implied that Tell Mama encouraged antisemitism.
Mrs Chetrit’s lawyer, Mark Lewis, said the tweets did not refer to Mr Mughal and were not defamatory.
Mr Lewis has reported Mr Mughal and Mr Bajwa to police after their letter to Mrs Chetrit demanding an apology and damages was sent to her home address, which she had not made public.
Dr Bajwa previously represented the Palestinian blood libel cleric Sheikh Raed Salah in his attempt to avoid deportation from Britain.