Diverse Group of Young British Muslims Gathers to Discuss Life After 7/7 Bombings

November 21, 2005

Source: The Guardian


On November 21, 2005 The Guardian reported, "Last week the Guardian brought together a diverse group of young Muslims to debate life after the London bombs. Two moods emerged: a desire to address extremism in their midst, and disaffection with British foreign policy... There is not always defensiveness and denial in the Muslim response to the bombs detonated in London, which placed Islam at the centre of a national debate. But the influential Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan, addressing the second annual Guardian Muslim Youth Forum last week, said young Muslims must stop complaining, be clear about the source of their problems and get themselves organised into 'critical citizens'. Unlike the riots in France, the bombs in Britain were 'a religious problem, so you should deal with that,' he told them. The teachers, IT professionals, counsellors, community workers, politicians, academics, students and imams who debated together at the forum were clear: the diverse Muslim communities are interrogating themselves more than anyone else. There was, however, anger that their own reflections were not matched by a spirit of self-criticism in government or an acceptance that its policies in Iraq and Afghanistan helped extremism take root. Since July, Tony Blair's administration has mixed anti-terror laws and an attempted new dialogue with young Muslims. Many still felt dissatisfied with how politicians are talking and listening to them."