On Sunday 28 May, the British Muslim Forum brought together Muslims from across Britain, led by Imams and scholars in Manchester to preach a message of unity and solidarity, following the Manchester attack.
The march from the Cathedral to St Ann’s Square was led by a Rabbi, an Imam and a Bishop: Rabbi Daniel Walker, Imam Irfan Chishti MBE and Bishop of Manchester David Walker. Onlookers clapped and cheered as the Imams arrived at the square which has become a floral sea of tributes.
Speaking strongly against any act of terror, BMF Spokesperson Imam Qari Asim MBE of Leeds Makkah Mosque spoke of how extremism and terrorism have no place in Islam or in any religion. “ISIS and its sympathisers are simply an affront to humanity”, he said. “They have no regard for God or humanity. Islam’s position is clear and unequivocal. Murder of one person, one soul, is the murder of the whole of humanity”, he continued. “We pray for peace, security and harmony to triumph in a multicultural, multi-belief Great Britain. Thank you”.
There was a rupture of applause as streams of people of all races, creed and colour kept pouring into the square to pay their respects and remember the 22 victims that lost their lives on Monday 22 May.
Manchester Central Mosque’s Allama Muhammad Arshad Misbahi added to the echoed condemnation of the horrific ideology of Salman Abedi. He said: “The British people have demonstrated the best of the national spirit of unity, compassion and solidarity. From the taxi drivers who turned off their meters, to the locals who opened up their homes to those affected by the attack. We have demonstrated that we are a people united and not one that will easily be torn apart”.
Senior scholars and Imams laid flowers in the square, led by Shaykh Muhammad Imdad Hussian Pirzada and Allama Qamaruzzaman Azmi, along with speaking to other members of the public in attendance.