Press Release: Islamophobia in Prisons stretches far beyond Belmarsh


Islamic Human Rights Commission


08 March 2006

Press Release: Islamophobia in Prisons stretches far beyond Belmarsh

The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) welcomes the report by chief inspector of prisons Anne Owers revealing the depth of Islamophobia within Belmarsh prison.

IHRC notes however that the mistreatment of Muslim prisoners is not exclusive to Belmarsh but is being replicated in prisons throughout Britain and indeed the world. Incidents of Muslim prisoners being denied permission to pray and being verbally threatened and abused by prison guards on account of their faith have repeatedly been reported from numerous prisons.

IHRC is deeply concerned about the culture of impunity that has developed where prison guards feel at liberty to abuse without question Muslim prisoners, some who have not even been charged, let alone convicted of any offence. IHRC notes that many Muslim prisoners, regardless of the nature of their offence, are treated by guards as terror suspects.

IHRC Chair Massoud Shadjareh stated:

“This repeated and widespread mistreatment in places as diverse as Britain, Cuba, Iraq and Egypt indicate that it has almost become acceptable to abuse Muslim prisoners as part of the War on Terror.”

For more information please contact (+44) 20 8904 4222, or (44) 7958 522196 or[ ENDS ]

Islamic Human Rights Commission
PO Box 598
United Kingdom

Telephone (+44) 20 8904 4222
Fax (+44) 20 8904 5183