Sydney Police probe firebrand cleric

 

 Sydney Morning Herald 

A firebrand Islamic leader who urged young Muslims to become holy warriors and labelled Jews as pigs could face charges of incitement to violence. 

Australian Federal Police are looking into DVDs featuring Sheik Feiz Mohammed, the leader of the Global Islamic Youth Centre in Liverpool, in Sydney's west. 

NSW Premier Morris Iemma today accused the sheik of inciting terrorism in the collection of DVDs, called the Death Series. The Federal Government said the sheik's DVD preachings were "reprehensible and offensive", Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd said they were "obscene" and Mr Iemma labelled them "disgusting". 

If it is found the sheik's comments breach sedition laws and incite acts of violence, the AFP will launch a full investigation and he could face charges. NSW Jewish Board of Deputies chief executive Vic Alhadeff said the sheik was inciting racial hatred. 

"It is of great concern when people in positions of influence abuse that power to incite racial hatred," Mr Alhadeff said. In the DVDs, which are on sale through the youth centre's website, the Sydney-born cleric urges young Muslims to be prepared to sacrifice themselves for Islam. 

The sheik, who has spent the past year living in Lebanon, also talks of a Muslim killing a Jew and ridiculed Jews as pigs. His preachings have again turned a negative spotlight on Australia's Muslim community, a week after the country's senior Islamic cleric Sheik Taj Aldin Alhilali told Egyptian television that white Australians were "liars" and that Muslims were more entitled to be in Australia than those with a convict heritage. 

Those comments followed Sheik Alhilali's remarks last October in which he said women who dressed immodestly invited sexual assault. 

"There is this pattern of behaviour which is very concerning to the government," acting federal attorney-general Kevin Andrews said. "We have had repeated remarks made by the most senior Islamic cleric in Australia, Sheik Alhilali. 

"We have these latest remarks - some of which are directed at parents and children. "The importation of hatred into Australia is totally unacceptable. These remarks and the others before them are condemned by the government." 

Mr Iemma said he would urge the Federal Government to ban sales of the DVDs. "This DVD goes a lot further than vilification," Mr Iemma told reporters in Sydney. "The sort of incitement that the DVD encourages is incitement to acts of violence and acts of terror."


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