PRESS RELEASE: Report now available on-line: Democracy in Question – The Persecution of the Believers


Islamic Human Rights Commission

PRESS RELEASE: Report now available on-line: Democracy in Question – The Persecution of the Believers
30 June 2003

IHRC’s latest report entitled: “Democracy in Question – The Persecution of the Believers”, and subtitled: ‘The Reverse Processing of Power and Powerlessness’, by Saied Reza Ameli, is now available on-line. This report is based on a paper he presented at the IHRC conference on ‘Prisoners of Faith’, held in February 2002.

This latest report asks and discusses the idea of democracy and Islam, under the following sub-headings:

• Democratising the World or Deluding it?
• Prisoners of Faith or Faith in Prison?
• Power and powerlessness

Ameli explains in detail the concept of the imprisonment of faith and the processes of secularisation. He looks at, and reflect on 9/11 and the concept of power and powerlessness. It briefly defines democracy, and goes onto discuss the concept of the democratisation of the world as currently being pursued in Western political theory and practice entails. Ameli proposes that underpinning the ideology of democracy is an ethnocentric value system- that Western culture is superior to every other culture. Thus a civilising missions, which is analogous to the ideology of colonisation finds itself a new name, it hides under the veneer of democracy.

Having read the report, the chairman of IHRC, Massoud Shadjareh commented:

“The report takes you through his argument, step-by-step. It is insightful and serious. The report challenges assumptions, puts Islam under the microscope with democracy, explains the true motivations and driving forces behind the West super-imposing their ideas of ‘civilization’ across cultures. It exposes the hypocrisy and irony of raging wars, in the name of democracy, especially by those boasting of being democratic. The report provides a critique, analyses the accusation that Islam is incompatible with democracy, and this topic is finally the attention it deserves.”

To read the whole report please visit:

For more information or an electronic or hard copy of the report, please contact the Press Office on (+44) 20 8902 0888 or email

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