London's IslamExpo Falls on 7/7 Anniversary

July 7, 2006

Source: BBC News

On July 7, 2006 BBC News reported, "The organisers insist it is a coincidence, but the fact that IslamExpo fell on the first anniversary of the London bombings was the powerful symbol British Muslims needed to say very publicly what they stand for. The �1.8m show at London's Alexandra Palace could have been just another event where Muslims talks to Muslims about being Muslim.

But instead the organisers found a simple formula of exhibitions, market stalls, and robust debate that very successfully managed to bring in a healthy proportion of white, non-Muslim people and, critically, create some dialogue.

And so, while the two-minute silence came and went, and Britain reflected on how we find, in simplest terms, a way to all get on, the many different people at IslamExpo just got on with it.

For Ihtisham Hibatullah, co-ordinator of the massive enterprise, this was what it was all about.

Taking his guests through the entrance hall of a Bedouin-style tent, and a very lavish interactive history of Islam, he said the show's mission was to give confidence to Britain's Muslim communities...

'Islam is not just part of the East anymore,' said Mr Hibatullah. 'It began there, but is now very much part of Europe, part of Britain.'"