A London University has refused to host a Gaza fundraiser with British former world boxing champion Amir Khan after the JC revealed it would feature a preacher who defended “armed resistance” against Israel two days after Hamas’s attack on October 7.
Khan has been named as the main speaker at the event next month alongside Redbridge Islamic Centre Imam Asim Khan, who signed a statement two days after the atrocities saying that Israel was a “settler colonial state” that practises genocide.
The statement declared: “We, as leading members of the British Muslim community, reaffirm the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to resist Israeli military occupation, including the right to armed struggle.”
It added: “We reject the use of the word ‘terrorism’ to describe Palestinian acts of resistance. It is never appropriate for a colonising force and those who enable it through political, military and financial support, to dictate to the victims of this colonial domination how they should resist.” The document, which was signed by dozens of Muslim leaders, also called for the release of all Palestinian prisoners and the “dismantling” of the Israeli state.
The statement was created and published by Cage, an advocacy group that was criticised in 2013 by Community Security Trust for hosting “antisemitic” material on its website and whose research director praised Isis murderer Jihadi John
An Evening with Amir Khan will see him, boxer Spencer Fearon, musician Safe Adam and others raise funds for Gaza
The fundraiser had been due to take place at Queen Mary University of London, but the university said it was no longer hosting the event after the JC alerted it about the speakers taking part. At time of going to press it was unclear where the event would be held.
The event was also due feature Sheikh Issa Hayajneh, an Islamic scholar who has expressed support for Hamas terrorists fighting the IDF in Gaza.
Writing earlier this month on Facebook, he said: “Hope is renewed for us, and the spirit sends us videos of glory and the red triangle, Allah bless the heroes’ arms.” In videos shared by Palestinian militants, red triangles are used to indicate the position of Israeli forces before they are attacked.
The shape has now become a symbol of support for Hamas’s fight against the IDF.
Amir Khan is a longtime supporter of the Palestinian cause who has thanked the Metropolitan police chief for allowing anti-Israel marches to go ahead in London. An Evening with Amir Khan will see him, boxing promoter Spencer Fearon, musician Safe Adam and others raise funds for Gaza. According to organiser Platinum Promotions, the exclusive charity event will be an “extraordinary and meaningful” night.
“Prepare to be inspired as we welcome world-famous boxer Amir Khan, who will share his journey, his message of hope, and his commitment to making a positive impact on the world,” they say.
When asked for comment, Sheikh Issa Hayajneh said: “Who are you? Are you serious?”
Asim Khan denies supporting terrorism. Amir Khan, who is not related to Asim Khan, was approached for comment.
Cage told the JC: "The statement is merely a restatement of the principles of international law including Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions (1977), art. 1 (4), and numerous UN General Assembly resolutions.”