Mohammed Shafiq (25 January 1979 in Manchester, England) is a founding member and Chief Executive of Ramadhan Foundation, a Muslim organisation based in Greater Manchester in the United Kingdom. He is also Head of News and Politics at the Ummah Channel.
Shafiq has spoken out against extremism and terrorism since 2001, and was the first UK Muslim leader to appear on BBC News to condemn the 2007 Glasgow International Airport attack.
In October 2013 he was warned by anti-terrorist police about death threats being made by the Al-Shabaab terrorist group.
In January 2014 he led a campaign in reaction to Maajid Nawaz tweeting a cartoon from the Jesus and Mo series. He was criticized by many in the media and social media as whipping up hatred against Maajid Nawaz.
In September 2014 he was criticised for attributing the rape of 1400 children in Rotherham to the way the children dressed and for the non-Pakistani community for letting their children stay out late.
In August 2005 he was appointed as press spokesman of The Ramadhan Foundation, a moderate group aimed at helping young Muslims in the United Kingdomand fostering interfaith dialogue.
Representing the Foundation, he has become a regular face across TV, radio and newspapers, responding to Muslim issues and making numerous statements on controversial subjects including forced marriages, honour killings, grooming of white teenagers, and drug dealers. He has been accused by MEP Daniel Hannan of being a "rent a quote" beloved of journalists for his controversial views, but more recently has been recognized for speaking honestly on controversial topics such as the cases of child grooming in Blackburn and Rochdale. He was also the first UK Muslim leader to appear on BBC News to condemn the 2007 Glasgow International Airport attack.
Muslim Unity Convention
Shafiq was the project manager for the 1st Muslim Unity Convention, held in the aftermath of the 7/7 attacks in 2005 in the city of Manchester at the magnificentBridgewater Hall.
Shafiq was a member of the organising committee of the 2nd International Muslim Unity Convention held in October 2009 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Shafiq has appeared regularly on television and radio since 2005. He came to prominence when the then newly elected Pope, Benedict XVI, made a controversial speech in Germany during which he quoted a 14th Century Christian emperor who said all the Prophet Muhammad had brought the world was "evil and inhuman"; the speech had provoked protests by Muslims across the world. Shafiq appeared on Sky News and BBC News 24 to discuss this issue.
Shafiq is a senior Presenter and Head of News and Politics on Ummah Channel and presents various shows including the world famous Debate Night show and also is the main English speaking presenter for special shows and broadcasts.
Shafiq also regularly reviews the newspapers on Stephen Nolan's weekend late night show on Fridays at midnight on BBC Radio 5 Live along with former Conservative MP Jerry Hayes.
In interviews and in published articles regarding the Rochdale sex trafficking gang, Shafiq has made controversial statements regarding members of the Pakistani community who had been involved in grooming girls, blaming them for harbouring a racist attitude towards white girls. He observed there was an over representation of Pakistani men convicted of child sexual exploitation and on street gang grooming in which the majority of victims are white. The groomers would exploit white girls for sex and abuse as "they should not have extra-marital sex with Pakistani girls inside their own tightly-knit communities".
In October 2013 Shafiq was alerted by anti-terrorist police that he and a number of other prominent Muslim figures in the UK had been targeted by a propaganda video created by Al-Shabaab, the terrorist group responsible for the attack on the Westgate shopping mall in Kenya: the video branded Shafiq and other Muslims for "selling out" and had urged jihadists in the UK to take action, citing the murder of Lee Rigby as an example to follow. Shafiq has been offered special protection by the police if there is any further sign of threat. Shafiq continues to campaign against terrorism and to give interviews.
Shafiq was a member of the Labour Party for two months in 1997 but resigned when the government introduced tuition fees against the promises before the election.
He is a supporter and member of the Liberal Democrats
In February 2008 he was asked to resign as vice-chairman of Rochdale Liberal Democrats, following comments he posted online under the name "Deeplish Lad", accusing a colleague of racism and using "tricks from the BNP handbook" - a move said by Lib Dem sources to be "the final straw".
Maajid Nawaz Controversy
In January 2014 Liberal Democrat Prospective Parliamentary Candidate Maajid Nawaz, a Muslim, posted a "Jesus and Mo" image on his Twitter account. The image depicts Jesus saying "hey" and Mohammed saying "How ya doin". Mohammed Shafiq then posted on Twitter "We will notify all muslim organisations in the UK of his despicable behaviour and also notify Islamic countries." Shafiq further Tweeted "Ghustaki Rasool Quilliam," so linking Nawaz's anti-extremist think tank with an Urdu term which means "defamer of the prophet" in Urdu, which under Islamic law is a crime that carries a death penalty. Maajid Nawaz has since received a number of death threats. Shafiq also reportedly organized an on-line petition to Nick Clegg to have Nawaz removed as a Liberal Democrat candidate, though when the organizers of the petition, named as SA et al., were contacted by the press they distanced themselves from Shafiq, adding, "Incitement to murder is completely unjustified."
An online petition with more than 6000 signatures (as of 26/01/14) was meanwhile created calling for Nick Clegg to discipline Mohammed Shafiq.
Shafiq attended Springhill High School in Rochdale and Bury College in Lancashire and is married with three daughters.
Source: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia