On the 25th of June 2008, Hizb-ut-Tahrir UK or HTUK gave a press conference outlining their plan to submit an application to the European court with the express aim of overturning the German government's banning of the Party in 2003 on the basis of anti-semitic activity.Representing HTUK was Jamal Harwood (legal representative UK), Taji Mustafa (media representative UK) and Shakir Ahmed(media representative Germany). According to the press release, HTUK had recruited the services of Barristers Chambers and the team includes Keir Starmer QC (Doughty Street Chambers) Matthew Ryder, Keiron Beal (both of Matrix Chambers) and Tayab Ali (McCormacks Solicitors). The use of such legal methods, institutions and persons close to the British government is unprecedented in HT history.
It is my argument that the appeal by HTUK is a figleaf for a covert channel of engagement between HTUK spearheaded by Jamal Harwood and the British government through MATRIX chambers. Previous overt engagements have occurred between HTUK and the British political establishment through Claire Short with an invitation at Westminister.British intelligence has been successful in fully infiltrating HTUK with CIVITAS claiming that intelligence is "all over them". A glimpse of this infiltration was demonstrated through the efforts of Ed Hussein and his recruitment of Maajid Nawaz and Rashad Ali, both of whom were high level within the HTUK structure. They now run a British government inspired covertly funded foundation known as the Quilliam Foundation. Despite its claim to fight extremism in general there is no doubt that its specific agenda is Hizb ut Tahrir. Therefore British intelligence seems to have to been successful in playing both groups with the help of some interesting manouvres by the UK government through the threats of a ban. The ban has not materialised under Labour because the government was still in the process of monitoring and influencing not only the internal structure but all operations emanating from HTUK which were instrumental in establishing cells in Europe, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia and others. Majid Nawaz who was privy to much of this information and has publicly stated his direct role in Pakistan and Denmark would have been further debriefed by the intelligence services.
The response of HTUK has been to threaten legal action. Such action has no legitimacy according to its understanding of Islamic jurisprudence. It seems the move by the government was to provide the leadership of HTUK with the cover to engage the government. However, the ban never materialised under Labour but is likely under a predicted Conservative government. For this reason HTUK have undertaken the German concern in order to lay the foundations for the covert channels with the Conservative government before the ban comes into place.
According to the press release: "The HT legal team led by Keir Starmer QC has highlighted the following points in the submission:
1. The silencing of HT re expression of its views publicly in Germany despite it being well known that HT is a non violent political party based on Islam.
2. The refusal of the German Constitutional court to hear the German appeal of HT citing that HT is a foreign association despite the fact that many of its members are German nationals, its clear existence in Germany for several decades, and despite the fact that the lower German courts banned the activities of HT in Germany (banning the Party in one court and not recognising it in another).
3. The rejection of the appeal of 21 members of HT resident in Germany, some of which have been expelled from the country and had their assets confiscated or frozen and despite several being German or EU nationals.
4. Banning of activities due to the supposed non-agreement with the “idea of International understanding” a principle which is insufficiently articulated to be readily ascertained. Furthermore, to ban an organisation’s activities on this basis is wholly disproportionate.
I would like to highlight a few points on this appeal:
1.There was no effort by HTUK, its representatives at the press conference or by Jamal Harwood in his interview with Islam Channel to outline the Islamic legitimacy upon which this appeal is based. This is a crucual point because HT follow a fundamental understanding of Islamic jurisprudence which states "every action requires evidence(from Islamic sources)".
2. According to HT understanding as outlined in its books, it recognises no legal mechanism, principle or law which is derived from outside what it considers the legal sources of Islam which are the Koran, Traditions of Mohammed, Consensus of the companions of Mohammed and Qiyas or legal analogy. It henceforth follows the jurisprudential principle which states "that which agrees with Islam is Kufr(non-Islamic) and that which disagrees with Islam is kufr" ie whatever is derived jurisprudentially from outside of the sources of Islam are invalid and prohibited.
3. Henceforth, HT does not recognise the legitimacy of laws, systems, governments, constitutions which are not derived from Islam. This is further based on its understanding of the verses of the Koran which states "Whoever does not judge by whatever Allah (God) has revealed are fasiq(wrongdoers), zalimoon(evil doers), kafiroon(non-believers)
4. The approach to seek judgment from courts, authorities, governments where no Islamic legitimacy exists is prohibited. This is how it understands the verses of Koran which prohibit the approach to bodies and institutions whose basis of legislation is not from the sources of Islam. One of the verses of the Koran states, "Have you seen those who say they believe in the revelation, yet they turn for their disputes to the Taghout (interpreted by HT as a body/instituion legislated from outside of the Islamic sources).
5.On the above basis HT's founder Taqiudine -an-Nabhani applied for the registration of the Party in Jordan in 1952 under the existing Ottoman law of association. However, it was not an application for legitimacy but a declaration of the party and hence it did not seek any legal address because it considered the Jordanian government, consitution and system as illegal.
6. The points raised by the HTUK have been purely on the considered illegality under European Human Rights Convention relation to the freedom of expression and association both principles which HT attacks in its literature as well as the principle of Human Rights.
7. Jamal Harwood argued that the German ban was based upon its own governments admission on the fear of the spread of HT and its success amongst the youth in Germany. He argued that nowhere else in Europe was this ban on HT. Hence the aim according to Shakir Ahmed was to expose the contradictions of Western capitalism and its notions of freedoms and democracy. This is while both Jamal Harwood and Shakir Ahmed state that HT does not work to establish Islam i=outside of the Muslim world but looks to protect and lead muslim communities in the West only and does not politically engage with the government.
Here there is a contradiction. The challenge to ideology of the German government is by nature political action and an engagement because it relates to the manner in which the German government looks after the affaisr of its citizens which includes Muslims. The engagement of societies outside of the muslim world is outside of the remit of HT. In actuality even the idea of working to build Muslim communities outside of the Muslim world for a post Caliphate period is a violation of its jurisprudential understanding that the work to establish Islam "in the muslim" world and "the instituion of the Caliphate" is a vital life and death concern according to the understanding of HT that the companions of the Prophet Mohammed delayed the burial of the Prophet Mohammed until after the election of a Caliph despite the conflict with the Islamic rule that a Muslim must be buried immediately.
It is important to note that Taqiudine an Nabahani did not put any consideration or value to the presence of Muslims or members of HT living/ working or studying in the West throughout his leadership of the Party for 30 years.The concentration of collective action was solely related achieving power in the Arab world as a primary objective with the expansion of the party members and influence of societieslimited to the rest of the Muslim world.
8. HT declares Britain as the nation which harbours the greatest hatred towards Islam based on its history with Islamic power and its success in infiltrating, destabilising and ultimately bringing down the Ottoman Caliphate. Accordingly it also regards Britain as the most politically cunning of all the nations and the one best in intelligence. Hence according to its draft constitution it is considered an "enemy" state for Muslims. In practical terms there is to be no relationship, link, approach or any form of contact with the British political/intelligence establishment or its surrogates. Any such contact is considered "poison" for any Islamic movement.
Yet HTUK has coveted the British political establishment through Claire Short at Westminster and now through MATRIX chambers which is strongly embedded with the British political establishment having been used by intelligebce to provide a statement of illegality for the Iraqi invasion and the US/UK position in order to indirectly embarrass the US. It was no coincidence Cherie Booth, wife of Tony Blair is also part of this chamber and UK intelligence is fully co-opted on all high profile cases. This connection has been highlighted by the HTUK itself in its lierature on Iraq.