British Muslim scholars must do more to challenge terrorist propaganda which implies that Islam condones violence, the chief of Scotland Yard has said. Bernard Hogan-Howe, who is retiring as Metropolitan Police commissioner at the end of this month, warned that more efforts were needed to counter the terror ideology.
Watch What Else Is Making News
“The hardest part for the western world is to interrupt this philosophy that Daesh [Islamic State] is perpetuating, which is that Islam in any way supports this horrific use of violence. There is no interpretation I would argue, that could say that, but some people are getting away with that,” he told the ‘Evening Standard’ newspaper.
“Muslim scholars have got to come up and be really challenging of that and be very clear that this can never be acceptable. There is no interpretation that can ever conclude it’s OK to kill people. We have all got to say that is wrong,” he said.
Around 850 Britons are believed to have travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight for ISIS, with at least half of them believed to have returned to the UK.
The 59-year-old, who is Britain’s senior-most police officer, warned that ISIS continued to lure British recruits by using false narratives and these returning recruits posed a grave security threat.
“We are now seeing Daesh’s sphere of influence being reduced in Syria and Iraq and it looks as though it’s clear that they will lose and the other side will win. Some of those people are going to come home and that’s the threat that’s hanging there,” he warned.
He, however, predicted that Brexit would have a “neutral” effect on Britain’s security and crime fighting because it was in the “common interest” of other European countries to cooperate closely with British law enforcement and intelligence agencies.