lmost a third of British Muslim students believe killing in the name of Islam can be justified, according to the results of a poll published by the London-based Sunday Times newspaper.
The study also found that two in five Muslims at universities support the incorporation of Islamic sharia codes into British law and a third support the creation of a worldwide caliphate or Islamic state.
Anthony Glees, professor of security and intelligence studies at Buckingham University, said that “the finding that a large number of students think it is okay to kill in the name of religion is alarming.
“There is a wide cultural divide between Muslim and non-Muslim students. The solution is to stop talking about celebrating diversity and focus on integration and assimilation.”
One of the reporter's authors, Han-nah Stuart, said that the results of the YouGov poll for the Centre for Social Cohesion (CSC) “are deeply embarrassing for those who have said there is no extremism in British universities.”
The researchers polled 1,400 Muslim and non-Muslim students and visited more than 20 universities to interview students and listen to guest speakers. They found that extremist preachers regularly gave speeches that were inflammatory, homophobic or bordering on anti-Semitic.
Israel described as 'inhumane project'
According to the report, the researchers highlighted Queen Mary college, part of London University, as a campus where radical views were widely held.
Last December, for example, a speaker named Abu Mujahid encouraged Muslim students to condemn gays because “Allah hates” homosexuality. A month earlier, Azzam Tamimi, a British-based supporter of Hamas, described Israel as the most “inhumane project in the modern history of humanity”.
The study also examined the relations between the sexes. In the report, 40% of Muslim students said it was unacceptable for Muslim men and women to associate freely. Homophobia was rife, with 25% saying they had little or no respect for gays. The figure was higher (32%) for male Muslim students. Among non-Muslims, the figure was only 4%.
The researchers also found that 55% of non-Muslim students thought Islam was incompatible with democracy. Nearly one in 10 had “little respect” for Muslims.
The report was criticized by the kingdom’s largest Muslim student body, Fosis, and by the National Union of Students, the Sunday Times reported.
Wes Streeting, the union's president, said that "this disgusting report is a reflection of the biases and prejudices of a right-wing think tank – not the views of Muslim students across Britain. Only 632 Muslim students were asked vague and misleading questions, and their answers were wilfully misinterpreted.”