A Leicester imam is launching a campaign to try to counter the hate messages of Islamic State.

Dr Ather Hussain al-Azhari will use Friday prayers at the Jamia Masjid-e-Bilal, in Evington Valley Road, to commence a drive to tackle the propaganda and recruitment of the terror group.

Dr Hussain has produced a new guide for parents to help them keep their children safe and is promoting a leaflet for fellow imams to help them educate their communities more robustly against IS ideology.

Hundreds of publications will be distributed after prayers at the mosque and the nearby Pak Foods Supermarket so that as many members of the community as possible receive the message.

The guides will be distributed in many mosques across Leicestershire.

Dr Hussain said: “There can be no doubt that Daesh and their supporters are largely responsible for the anti-Muslim climate we are all unfortunately living in.

“Islam by definition means peace yet these people promote Islam as a tool of violence. Many thousands of Muslims have suffered brutally because of their evil.”

He added: “Though our imams are working endlessly to quash the baseless Daesh propaganda, it is sadly often said that Muslims are not vocal enough.

“This is therefore a great opportunity to put this misconception to rest.

“In a display of unity, we can show everyone that Muslims are vehemently against

extremism more than anyone else because Daesh’s violence is ‘Not in our Name’.”

At present, Iraq’s army is making steady but slow process in operations to retake Mosul from IS, which has been losing territory under pressure from its variousĀ enemies in the region.

Dr Hussain said: “Unfortunately, there have been cases of people with connections to Leicester joining Daesh, though it has not been a massive problem here.

“That is why we need to be more proactive as well as reactive. Daesh is a burning house. It is struggling but as it struggles its message becomes more desperate.”

It is intended that following the Leicester launch, partners in other parts of the UK will spread the message further.#

Source: Leicester Mercury