Muslims congratulated over robust participation

06 May 2005

At a time when there has been unprecedented interest in the ‘Muslim vote’ in the General Elections, the Muslim Council of Britain congratulates British Muslims for the dignified manner in which they have responded to the challenges facing them.

“Yesterday’s General Elections came at a difficult time when there is clearly a lot of disaffection among British Muslims about the Iraq war, the application of draconian anti-terror laws and the manner in which sections of the media have used sensationalism to stigmatize our entire community. The issues raised by British Muslims were mainstream concerns and not peripheral as the results around the country show clearly.

`We are encouraged that despite this negative background the British Muslim community have reaffirmed their commitment to a fuller participation in the civic and political life of the country to work for the common good. The election results show that no single party can any longer take the Muslim community’s votes for granted. The Muslim electorate has become more discerning and that is good news for the health of our democracy,” said Iqbal Sacranie, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Britain.

The Muslim Council of Britain particularly welcomes the election of two Muslim candidates, Sadiq Khan and Shahid Malik, to the House of Commons, in addition to the existing two, Muhammad Sarwar and Khalid Mahmood, who were re-elected, bringing the total number of Muslim MPs now to four.

“We are delighted to see the election of these two young, talented and dynamic British Muslims to Parliament. This is a positive trend and we hope we will continue to see increased numbers of British Muslims joining the mainstream political parties and contributing to our local and national political debate,” added Mr Sacranie.

The MCB for its part will continue to work with the elected government to ensure that election promises are delivered, while remaining engaged with all the main political parties on policy issues that affect our community and the country.

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Notes to Editors:

1. The Muslim Council of Britain (www.mcb.org.uk) is the UK’s representative Muslim umbrella body with over 400 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.

For further information please contact: The Muslim Council of Britain, Boardman House, 64 Broadway, Stratford, London E15 1NT,
Tel: 07708 065 150 or 0208 432 0585/6, Fax: 0208 432 0587, Email: media@mcb.org.uk, Website: http://www.mcb.org.uk