Link between antisemitism and extremism highlighted in new report
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Link between antisemitism and extremism highlighted in new report

Pathway to Terror briefing, which focuses on the recent terrorism trial of Shehroz Iqbal, outlines the connection between antisemitism and hate crime

Tali is a reporter at Jewish News

Shehroz Iqbal (Credit: Metropolitan Police); Chabad Lubavitch Synagogue (credit: Google Maps Street View)
Shehroz Iqbal (Credit: Metropolitan Police); Chabad Lubavitch Synagogue (credit: Google Maps Street View)

Antisemitism can be a warning sign of extremism, a revealing new report by the Community Security Trust (CST) reveals.

The Pathway to Terror briefing, which focuses on the recent terrorism trial of Shehroz Iqbal – who was sentenced to eight and a half years in prison – displays the connection between antisemitism, hate crime and terrorism.

Iqbal was a serial antisemitic hate crime offender in the years leading up to his terrorism conviction, during which CST had to do a large amount of work to protect the Jewish community in Gants Hill and its neighbouring areas, specifically from the threat he posed.

Iqbal’s extremism began with antisemitic verbal abuse on the streets of London when Iqbal made threatening and antisemitic comments to a visibly Jewish motorist in Stamford Hill. Iqbal is alleged to have shouted, “I’m going to kill you, I’m going to kill all of you Jews, you killed my brothers”, for which he was arrested. Following his arrest, Iqbal pleaded guilty of having made antisemitic death threats and received a suspended 16-week jail sentence with 80 hours of unpaid work.

But Iqbal’s online activity also showed he was descending further into a world of Islamist extremism. He showed a growing interest in posts about attacks on Jews and developed an online connection to senior figures associated with the proscribed UK terrorist organisation, Al-Muhajiroun. It was this online activity, specifically the posting of an ISIS propaganda video from 2015 showing ISIS fighters in battle, alongside a video of himself outside the Royal Festive Hall, in which he called for various central London locations to be attacked, which led to his arrest and conviction.

Throughout this period, CST tracked Iqbal’s increasingly threatening behaviour towards the Jewish community, worked with counter terrorism police and provided security advice and reassurance to those in the Jewish community that Iqbal targeted.

CST say this is a clear example of why reporting anti-Jewish hate, which could be a precursor of more dangerous activities, plays such a vital role in keeping communities safe. The organisation added that it shows the police and the government’s approach to terrorism needs to take into account all aspects of a person’s behaviour, including their online content.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish News also produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments