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Against Criminalising Communities

Salma Yaqoob speaking at the 2005 Stop the War Coalition Conference


I would like speak in favour of the first resolution (see below). The Stop the War Coalition has three aims. One to stop the war, two to stop the attacks on civil liberties and three to stop the racist backlash and we know how all three issues are entwined.


I think this resolution is really, really important, it goes to the heart of the so called war on terror, it has been legitimised through the anti-terror laws and I have to say that one of the biggest successes of the anti-war movement was the return of Mozamm Begg.  It would have been great to stop the war but the fact that someone like Mozamm Begg was brought back despite all the years he’s spent in Guantanamo Bay.


It has nothing to do with the good will of President Bush it’s got nothing to do with Blair’s special relationship with bush or his conscience it is because there was huge public pressure in this country expressed through the huge public demonstrations against the war that has brought him back so I think that it is vital for one that we build for March 19th and also as part of that we continue to show solidarity.


It’s not just about the prisoners its about the Muslim community as a whole as well because I tell you now when we tried to organise any meetings against anti-terror laws in mosques, we can’t have them there, the mosques are so scared they wont even let us host meetings in a mosque that is a real fear that is the state of terror in Britain today.


Don’t underestimate the role of each and every one of you here in combating that fear that’s what’s given  confidence for Muslims whether we’ve just come here or whether we’ve been here for generations this is really a matter.. total quality of life for British Muslims right now so please continue your efforts and support this resolution.


Support this resolution.



Motion from Campaign Against Criminalising Communities (CAMPACC)


Anti-terror laws


The “war on terror” is an attack on democracy and civil liberties. British state terror abroad depends upon so-called “anti-terror” laws to deter and even criminalise opposition here. These laws target migrant and Muslim communities, as well as political activists in general.



  1. We reiterate our total opposition to so-called “anti-terror” laws and their use.

  2. We demand the immediate release of anyone detained under such laws, unless they are charged with a crime under the ordinary criminal law.

  3. We support the national lobby of Parliament, asking MPs

  • to support EDM 426 ‘Belmarch judgement’, which demands that UK law be changed to abandon internment powers, and,

  • to undertake to vote against the renewal or extension of any “anti-terror” laws.

  1. We will make links with local communities targeted by “anti-terror” laws and will include this issue in local public meetings.

  2. We demand an investigation of MI5’s complicity in the torture of people held in illegal detention centres abroad, e.g. Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib.


February 2005


For Socialist Unity ~ For Internationalism ~ For Peace ~ For Justice ~ For Unity ~ For Socialism