Lutfur Rahman, the first directly elected mayor of the borough, is also the country’s first, and so far only, Muslim to hold the office. He explains “I happen to be Muslim and I’m proud of that. I’m proud of my faith; I’m proud of my upbringing; I’m proud of my roots. I’m a British Bengali, but I’m also a resident of Tower Hamlets and a citizen of this country and I share its values.” It is difficult to recognise in the formal besuited mayor the demonised hate figure of the British conservative press who have been portraying him as a crypto-fundamentalist. Only this week, a Daily Telegraph columnist called him “extremist-linked” even though the British Press Council had recently ordered the paper to retract a previous statement. The “link” seems to be that Mayor Rahman goes to mosques – and so do Al-Qaeda members.
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East ‘End’s First Muslim Mayor Unfazed by Racist Press Attacks’
August 8, 2012 by Lutfur