Appointment of anti-Muslim Shawcross befits discredited Prevent strategy


William Shawcross, known for his open disdain of Islam and Muslims, has been appointed to lead a review of the UK government’s discredited Prevent programme. In 2012, Shawcross said that “Europe and Islam is one of the greatest, most terrifying problems of our future. I think all European countries have vastly, very quickly growing Islamic populations”. While Shawcross was at the helm of the UK Charity Commission, the commission was institutionally bias against Muslim charities, and in his book, Justice and the Enemy, he appears to support the use of torture against Muslim detainees at Guantánamo Bay.

In his remarks today to mark the Holocaust Memorial Day, Turkey’s President, Recep Tayep Erdogan urged the international community to ensure the genocides that occurred in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Cambodia are never repeated. He added that the time has come to say no to Islamophobia and hostility towards foreigners that have been escalating in recent years. He pointed to the increase of attacks on mosques, synagogues and churches, not to mention other hate crimes.

Adding to President Erdogan’s comments of today, Abdurrahim Boynukalin, chairman of the AK Party UK, said “Shawcross’s appointment is testament of the growing anti-Muslim sentiment in Britain. How can someone with an open track record of hatred towards Muslims be asked to lead something like this? I suppose his profile befits the totally flawed Prevent programme which rights groups and the wider Muslim community have collectively shunned as disproportionately targeting Muslims. Both Prevent and Shawcross must go!”


Notes to editors:

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2. AK Party UK is a division of the AK Parti in Turkey (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi) or Justice and Development Party, and is headed by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The London division was launched in 2018 and hosted President Erdogan and First Lady Emina Erdogan in London on 4th December 2019 – marking the first major reception of its kind in the UK with a large presence of the Turkish diaspora and the Muslim community.