Hounslow Council is demanding the cancellation of a controversial Muslim debate due to be held at a Hounslow school.

The council expressed concerns after it emerged “extremist” group Hizb Ut-Tahrir would be among the speakers at the event at Lampton School tomorrow.

Despite the group pulling out of the event, the council is still insistent it should be cancelled, leaving community groups incensed.

Council leader Peter Thompson wrote to the school’s headteacher Sue John to say the presence of Hizb Ut-Tahrir at the Putting Contest 2 in Context debate was unacceptable. He also said a school was not the right place for the debate.

But Mohammed Chaudhry, of Hounslow Muslim Forum, denied the debate would incite any violence and said representatives from Hizb Ut-Tahrir, which is banned in Pakistan, the Middle East and Russia, had pulled out.

As well as council officials, police officers pencilled in to speak at the event have also cancelled.

Mr Chaudhry said: “If you close the debate then the radicals will have an advantage. We are being pushed into a corner.

“We wanted to have a balanced debate with both sides talking about issues. If you stop this you are giving fuel to the radicals and that is not the right approach.”

In the letter, Mr Thompson wrote: “We have real concerns that the lack of balanced debate could inflame perceived grievances and lead to a breakdown in community cohesion.

“In truth, the only purpose of the event appears to be an attempt to increase fear and mistrust among Muslims in the UK, and in our borough.

“The use of publicly-owned premises such as the school by groups holding extreme religious, ideological or political views, who aim to create or exploit grievances and community tensions to the detriment of the whole community should not be permitted.

“We are clear on the value of a full debate with our Muslim communities around actual and perceived, local, national and international grievances and are proposing an autumn event with our Muslim communities here in the Civic Centre.

“Can I urge you to make the right decision for all our communities and cancel this event at Lampton School.”

The invitation to the event stated: “We hope to have a frank and candid discussion to clarify issues which many of Hounslow’s Muslims feel are associated with recent policy developments and important counter-extremism initiatives.

“In order to facilitate a fair discussion, we have taken pains to invite delegates from the Home Office, the police and the local authority.

“We do not promote a single view, but instead celebrate a broad spectrum of Muslim voices. We hope to make ourselves heard through open dialogue, an inclusive interfaith agenda and a wide base of support.

“At our core, we celebrate Hounslow borough’s strength in diversity and fully subscribe to the Building Pride Borough Wide plan.”

The school declined to comment.

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