“How did a known neo-Nazi get British sponsorship and get into this country? Where’s the counterterrorism?”
On this week’s TMV Podcast, Salim and Rukshana speak to Maz Saleem, whose father was tragically murdered in 2013 by a neo-Nazi. They speak on the horrendous lack of support from the police at the time, Islamophobia in the UK, and how she transformed her life into a powerful example of social justice campaigning.
To listen to the full podcast, click below:
Maz Saleem, whose father was murdered by a known neo-Nazi in 2013, first discusses the incident in which her father was tragically killed: followed home from the mosque by a neo-Nazi and stabbed to death, her father’s death sent shockwaves throughout the community. The same neo-Nazi that killed her father, however, went three months without getting caught and was behind the bombing campaign that targetted numerous mosques in the Midlands as well.
Maz describes how the police themselves were so problematic, and even accused the family first of being behind the murder. The trauma of being accused of somehow being behind her own father’s murder was horrendous – and Maz stresses that the fact that this hate-crime, including the murder of her father and the bombing campaign, went almost unnoticed in wider British media.
This was one of the biggest acts of terrorism on UK soil and yet today not many people have heard about it.”
Despite taking three months to finally catch the neo-Nazi behind this attack, the media and police leaned towards calling it a “lone wolf attack” – a term often used to describe white terrorists to soften or explain the reasoning behind the attack. Maz explains how problematic this was, and stresses that this particular neo-Nazi was most likely not working alone: he was a known neo-Nazi from Ukraine, who had detailed knowledge and support in the UK that helped him carry out his crimes.
The fact that despite being an open and known neo-Nazi he was still allowed into the UK is a deep-rooted issue as well, states Maz.
How did a known neo-Nazi get British sponsorship and get into the country? Where’s the counterterrorism? And this is still not recognized as a terrorist attack by most of the British media.”
Maz Saleem and her family, after struggling to recover and heal from such a horrendous attack, realized the importance of fighting for their rights and getting the justice they and her late father deserve: Maz describes how they had to keep challenging the police reports and attended numerous protests and campaigns to raise awareness despite being attacked and belittled by the local government, police, and even mosques.
Because of and despite all of this, Maz is today one of the most inspiring and hard-working social justice campaigners in the UK today – a part of Stand Up To Racism, Stop the War Coalition, and now spearheading Education for Peace in memory of her late father, Maz is now currently also helping with the Shukri Abdi case.
Despite the numerous campaigns against her and the hatred that comes from being in the public eye, Maz states that she will not back down – fighting for justice is now her life’s campaign.
“People have dragged me and my father’s name through the mud,” states Maz, “but I will still persevere on…I know I haven’t done anything wrong. I have Allah watching me, and when injustice is done we cannot sit there in silence.”
To listen to the rest of this powerful conversation, click below: