Senior British Imam backs Boris Johnson in burqa row and says the covering should be banned because it is a ‘hideous tribal ninja-like garment that oppresses women’
- Imam Taj Hargey of the Oxford Islamic Congregation defended Boris Johnson
- He said the UK has been tricked into thinking the burqa is Islamic but it is not
- Tory party has launched a formal investigation into Mr Johnson’s comments
A senior British Imam today backed Boris Johnson in the burqa row and said the oppressive face coverings should be banned.
Imam Taj Hargey, from the Oxford Islamic Congregation said the Tory MP has nothing to apologise for and ‘did not go far enough’ in his remarks.
He branded the burqa a ‘hideous tribal ninja-like garment’ and said its has ‘no Koranic legitimacy’.
His strident defence came as the Tory Party confirmed it has launched a formal investigation into Mr Johnson for comparing women in burqas to letter boxes.
Imam Taj Hargey, pictured last year on ITV’s This Mornibf with Sahar Al-Faifi, has backed Boris Johnson in the ongoing burka row and he believes it should be banned
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Tory sources have insisted the party was left with no choice but to launch the probe because it was triggered automatically after they received a flurry of complaints.
But the move has sparked a furious backlash from Mr Johnson’s allies who have accused No10 of trying to ‘destroy’ the ex minister because they see him as a threat.
What is the Tory disciplinary panel and what punishments could it give Boris?
The Tory party launched its new stricter code of conduct in 2017 in the wake of the Westminster sex pest scandal.
Under the rules, any member who is accused of flouting the code of conduct could face a grilling by a disciplinary panel.
Here is the process which faces Boris Johnson:
How does the party decide what punishment to give out?
It is up to the PM and the board of the Conservative Party to decide what punishment to give out.
The code of conduct states they have discretion to ‘take such action as they see fit. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, suspension of membership or expulsion from the Party.’
But it suggests that only the most serious cases will be result in the member being kicked out of the party.
The code states: ‘Any removal of rights of membership will only be made after due considerations of natural justice.’
Mr Hargey warned that the burqa has become trendy among more militants Islamists who peddle views which can be a gateway for religious extremism.
And he urged the UK to follow in the footsteps of other European countries like France and Denmark and ban the burqa.
Writing in The Times, he said: ‘Boris Johnson should not apologise for telling the truth.’
He said the ex minister had reminded the country that the face mask ‘has no Koranic legitimacy’ but is ‘a nefarious component of a trendy gateway theology for religious extremism and militant Islam’.
He added: ‘The burqa and niqab are hideous tribal ninja-like garments that are pre-Islamic, non-Koranic and therefore un-Muslim.
‘Although this deliberate identity-concealing contraption is banned at the Kaaba in Mecca it is permitted in Britain, thus precipitating security risks, accelerating vitamin D deficiency, endorsing gender-inequality and inhibiting community cohesion.’
He said that some backward-looking elements in the Muslim community have managed to persuade may in British society that it is in the Islamic faith for women to cover their faces.
But he said this must be challenged in Britain and that the state should step in to stop it.
He said: ‘Johnson did not go far enough. If Britain is to become a fully integrated society then it is incumbent that cultural practices, personal preferences and communal customs that aggravate social division should be firmly resisted.
‘For this reason Britain must emulate France, Belgium, Austria, Bulgaria and Denmark in banning the burqa.’
Mr Johnson sparked a massive political storm after he made the controversial comments in his Daily Telegraph column on Monday.
Tory Remainer MPs and ministers queued up to condemn him and he was accused of risking inciting religious hatred over the remarks.
Boris Johnson (pictured left) is being investigated by the Tory party after comparing women wearing burqas to letterboxes – but his supporters have slammed Theresa May and No10 saying they are orchestrating the move to damage his career
But Mr Johnson, who is away on summer holiday as the storm blows up in the UK, has declined to comment.
It emerged today that the party has launched a formal investigation into him after receiving complaints.
Under Tory Party rules, an investigating officer will now decide if Mr Johnson has flouted their code of conduct and if the probe should be referred on to a panel to grill him on.
If they find him at fault then Mrs May can decide what punishment to give her former minister – and could even kick him out of the Tory Party.
Tory MP Andrew Bridgen told MailOnline: ‘I believe this is politically motivated, by the internal politics of the Tory party, by politicians who want to humiliate and destroy Boris Johnson.’
He added: ‘I believe that the public will see this for what it is – an internal Conservative party witch hunt instigated by Number Ten against Boris Johnson, who they see as a huge threat.’
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