‘In an ideal society we would punish homosexuals’, says Islamic cleric in BBC interview

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

The Chairman of the Islamic Centre in Luton believes gay people would be punished in an ideal world of Britain resembling an Islamic state.

Abdul Qadeer Baksh made the remarks last Wednesday during a radio interview on BBC Three Counties alongside the former English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson.

Mr Baksh stated “In an ideal society” there would be “punishments for homosexuals”. Whilst stressing that it was unlikely Britain would ever adopt Sharia law, he indicated that his personal preference would be to live in a society that followed the code – with no acceptance of homosexuality.

“When I say ‘ideal society’ I mean Islamic society, not a western secular society like we live in here.” He continued: “Every moderate Muslim holds this view as well.” Mr Baksh added: “[Britain] is far from an Islamic state”.

“What I would like to see is peace and tranquillity, all of us to get on together. If Sharia came to this country it would only come by the people’s desire for it”.

Mr Baksh then said: “I spoke to a moderate gay Muslim, we differed and that was the end of the matter.”

He added that in Saudi Arabia “very, very few hands are chopped off” or “women lashed” and the laws are mainly a deterrent.

Tommy Robinson (real name Stephen Yaxley-Lennon) dramatically quit the EDL last week saying he had concerns over the “dangers of far-right extremism”. Known for making anti-Islamic remarks, after launching the group in 2009, he complained of town centres “plagued by Islamic extremists”.

Mr Robinson’s decision to leave the EDL followed discussions with the Quilliam group, which describes itself as a “counter-extremism think tank”. Quilliam is made up of Islamic clerics, who claim they have renounced extremism.