Middlesex Uni terminates partnership with Islamic college

The north London Islamic college has been described as Iran’s “foothold” in the UK


The headline has been altered following a complaint from the Islamic College. The original version did not reflect the actual circumstances of terminating their partnership with Middlesex University

[Middlesex University is severing its ties with an Islamic college which has links to the brutal Iranian regime and hired staff who backed banned terror group Hezbollah and compared Israel to the Nazis.

Following a review the university said it would end its accreditation of The Islamic College’s degrees.

The decision came after a JC investigation had exposed a catalogue of issues with the college which is based in Willesden, north west London, near several thriving shuls including Brondesbury United just seven minutes away.

The college, which had previously received hundreds of thousands of pounds in taxpayers’ cash, was accused of being Tehran’s “foothold” in the UK and “a threat to the security of the Jewish community”.

Its founder, Saied Reza Ameli, is now an adviser to Iran’s Supreme Council for the Cultural Revolution which recently issued edicts enforcing the wearing of the hijab by Iranian women that has sparked a wave of violent protests across the country.

Several pro-regime websites claim the college is the British affiliate of Al-Mustafa International University, which is controlled by Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and has been sanctioned by the US under anti-terror laws.

The US has described Al-Mustafa as “a recruiting platform for the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force” — the spearhead of Iran-sponsored terror in the Middle East and beyond. There is no evidence that the London college is involved in terrorism.

However, the JC revealed, one academic at the college had claimed that mass-murderer Anders Breivik was an “ultra-Zionist”; its former principal, Mohammad Saeed Bahmanpour, was filmed urging a crowd to chant support for the now-banned terror group Hezbollah at a London rally in 2013; and another lecturer compared Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to the Nazis’ of Jews.

In response, Kasra Aarabi, head of the Tony Blair Institute’s Iran Programme, said the fact that the college “appears to be an Al Mustafa affiliate on British soil is very worrying”.

Three months after the JC highlighted the college’s connections to Iran, a spokesperson from Middlesex University said: “Following a review of our partnership with the Islamic College in London we have mutually agreed to terminate."

In a statement to the JC, they added: “Middlesex University has a statutory duty of care to students currently studying at the College and we are in close contact with the regulatory body, the Office of Students, to ensure a smooth transition. The end date for our partnership will be 31 December 2023.”

Previously an Islamic College spokesperson had said that it was “an academic institution striving to offer programmes of highest standards in Islamic studies” which had been “endorsed by external bodies responsible for guaranteeing the academic standards and safeguarding requirements of British universities”.

They said the college was “not engaged in the propagation of any ideology” and had “no affiliation” with Al-Mustafa in Iran.

It has been approached for comment since Middlesex University’s announcement.

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