London imam says he was fired by mosque for raising questions about Saudi disappearance
By Barfi Culture Team
9th October 2018

A London-based imam says he was fired from his job for raising concerns about the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Ajmal Masroor, a popular imam of Bangladeshi heritage from East London, wrote that Goodge Street Mosque had abruptly fired him over his views on the disappearance of the Saudi royal family insider.

On a Facebook post today he wrote: "I have been fired from the Goodge Street Mosque at the orders of the Saudi government who fund that centre and run it like their own fiefdom. This is no coincidence that I have been fired when bigger and more influential people including journalists, academics and Islamic scholars are facing Saudi death squads for their principle stance."

He added: "We already know that the crown prince Muhammad Bin Salman is silencing all his oppositions or critiques at home by locking them up and internationally by threatening them. I am not a Saudi citizen but I have personally experienced their reactions to any forms of criticism. The Saudi Royal family believe that they are beyond criticism and everyone must bow down in submission to their family’s divinely ordained right to rule and absolute authority.

"For those of you who know me you would know that I am not afraid of speaking the truth and facing up to a tyrant and in that spirit, I have never accepted Al-Saud family as a legitimate ruler of Saudi Arabia. After 22 years of service to the congregation at the Goodge Street mosque I was given the marching order yesterday, 9th October 2018."

Ajmal Masroor said he had been "reprimanded for my criticism" of the Saudi government in previous years too and would always "stand for justice and fairness".

Goodge Street Mosque is also known as the Muslim World League London office.

In a statement in response today a spokesperson said: "It was agreed with [imam Ajmal Masroor] that the mosque pulpit is not the place to attack people, governments, group or sect or to express certain political views. And together, we will strive for coexistence, tolerance and cooperation to serve the British community. But since he continued provoking public opinion against the individuals, governments, causing stir in the society, shaming and accusing falsely, no option was left but to stop dealing with him in anyway."

It added: "To say that only Saudi projects would have the right to use the office space in the building, as Ajmal’s Facebook says, is a sheer ignorance of real character of the mosque."

Most of the comments on Facebook in response to Ajmal Masroor's post were in support. Shahrin Alam wrote: "I think you should take them to court for wrongful dismissal. Keep up the good work bro."

Binte Kazmi wrote: "Respected brother Ajmal, I’m sorry to hear all this . You sleep with a clear conscience every night by speaking the truth . Its a rare trait in this day and age ...never compromise on it."

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