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Edge on Terrorism

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UK Editor of The Muslim News Denounces Focus on Islamist Terror

July 24th 2011

Islamic Topics - Ahmed Versi
Ahmed Versi, editor of The Muslim Times

Ahmed Versi, the editor of Britain's The Muslim News, drew parallels between Norway’s bombing and massacre on July 22 to the devastating bomb set off by Timothy McVeigh in Oklahoma City OK in 1995. Versi said “When the news of the bombing broke all the media, including al Jazeera English, began speculating that the perpetrators could be al-Qaeda, Islamists, Islamic terrorists.” The Muslim News claims to be Britain’s leading Muslim news organization. According to The Muslim News, the paper “monitors the numerous Islamophobic attacks in Britain,” while Versi added that speculation even extended to the possibility that the Libyan government could be behind the blast in Oslo and the subsequent killing of young campers. Versi mused that there was “no mention of right wing extremists.”

The editor said, “Again, when it transpired that it was a right-wing anti-Muslim Christian, the response was ‘it is unbelievable that a Norwegian would do such a thing’ even though most terrorist attacks in Europe are committed by non-Muslims.” Versi quoted figures from the European Police Office (Europol) showing that Muslims only carried out one out of the 498 terrorist attacks committed in the European Union in 2006. “It reminded me of the Oklahoma bombing in the US when again Muslims were blamed for the 168 people killed, including 19 children under the age of 6. The bomber was again a right wing Christian,” Versi said.

Universal condemnation of the bombing and massacre has emerged, while some media described it has being Norway's 9/11.

According to The Muslim News, the paper “has been a leading critic of the British government’s counter-terrorism strategy being so narrowly focused on al-Qaeda to such an extent that it alienates the country's two million Muslim community, while warning of the dangers of overlooking threats posed by right-wing extremists.”  Added Versi, “It is important that the security should look into the right wing anti-Muslim Christian extremists who are on the increase otherwise more innocent lives will be lost.”  He said also “This attack and others in Europe shows that extremism and terrorism is mostly perpetrated by non-Muslims.”

Muslims account for approximately  2 to 3 percent of Norway’s population. Largely Pakistani in origin, Norway’s Muslims amount to approximately 80,000 and are concentrated in the Oslo area.  Their number grew by about 10 percent between 2007 and 2008, according to official statistics.  In 2010, three Muslism from various countries were arrested by Norway and Germany and linked to what has been described as a hub of Islamist terror associated with Al-Qaeda.  Indeed, two Muslim terrorist groups initially claimed responsibility for the killings once they became known.

Anders Behrin Breivik (32),  who is now in custody, has been variously described by Norwegian police and media as a “Freemason,” “right-wing Zionist,” “Christian fundamentalist,” and “farmer,”  disgruntled with the rise of Islam in Norway. He was apparently able to secure a sufficient amount of agricultural fertilizer to serve as the material necessary for his bomb because of his designation as a farmer and his ‘Eco-Farm’ business.

Cutting Edge Senior Correspondent Martin Barillas also edits Speroforum.com

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