Al-Muhajiroun (The Emigrants) are a banned Islamic extremist organisation with proven terrorist links and have taken various guises over the years. Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) hit the headlines in November 2011 after the Home Secretary, Theresa May, proscribed the organisation on the eve of Remembrance Sunday. The year before, MAC caused public outrage when they burned two large poppies outside the Royal Albert Hall. MAC was founded in 2010 by Abu Assadullah and acts under the guidance of former solicitor Anjem Choudary.
MAC was officially founded in 2010 but its true origins can be traced back to 1983 when Omar Bakri Mohammed, a radical Islamist cleric, founded Al-Muhajiroun (AM) in the wake of an internal schism of the pan-Islamic organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT). Upon Bakri’s expulsion from Saudi Arabia he moved to England in early 1986 where he became the British leader of HT.
He simultaneously fostered Al-Muhajiroun until deciding to officially declare it as an independent organisation in 1996 with British born co-founder Anjem Choudary. Whereas HT only desired to establish the Khilafah (the creation of an Islamic state under sharia law) in Muslim countries, Bakri and Choudary wanted to establish it worldwide by twinning Daw’ah (the call to Islam) and Jihad (struggle).
Al-Muhajiroun pursued these aims by spreading hate on the streets of Britain and aiding terrorism both domestically and around the world
Anjem Choudary, raised in a semi-detached house in Welling, Kent, turned from his life as a solicitor to embrace radical Islam. His infamous reputation grew when he came to public attention in 1999 after The Daily Telegraph identified his role in recruiting British Muslims to fight abroad for groups like the International Islamic Front. In 2003 Al-Muhajiroun gained worldwide notoriety when they publicly advertised a conference called “The Magnificent 19” to celebrate the second anniversary of 9/11. In response to international condemnation Choudary said “Those individuals are Muslims, they were carrying out their Islamic responsibility and duty, so in that respect they were magnificent…’
The following year, under new anti-terrorism laws, the government proscribed the organisation and it soon disbanded. Despite the Home Office’s best attempts to stifle Al-Muhajiroun, the organisation has continually re-emerged under different aliases. Ahl ul-Sunnah Wa al-Jamma, Al Ghurabaa and The Saviour Sect all emerged in 2005 as splinter groups, only to be proscribed by then Home Secretary John Reid in 2006. In 2008 Choudary launched Islam4UK, which caused widespread disgust with its attempt to hold a protest in Wootton Bassett (where military funeral repatriations took place) in 2010. The march was subsequently cancelled and days later the organisation was also proscribed.After Muslims Against Crusades (MAC) was proscribed in 2011, Choudary and his followers immediately established a new group, Izhar Ud-Deen-il-Haq.
While it’s easy to dismiss Al-Muhajiroun and it’s related groups as irrelevant, it’s actions feed anti-Muslim sentiment in the press and act as a conveyor belt for terrorism.
Joe Mulhall, HOPE not hate.
Above: Anjem Choudray
Below: Omar Bakri
Copyright HOPE not hate