Al Jazeera

Muslim and Jewish neighbours unite against hate in London

London, United Kingdom – Muslims and Jews living in the same North London neighbourhood are making a stand together against hate crime amid concerns of an increased threat to both communities in the aftermath of the Paris attacks.

Rabbi Herschel Gluck established the Muslim-Jewish Forum in 2000. [Simon Hooper]

Rabbi Herschel Gluck established the Muslim-Jewish Forum in 2000. [Simon Hooper]

Jewish communities in the UK have been on a heightened state of alert since a siege orchestrated by a gunman at a kosher supermarket in the French capital left four hostages dead, with police and Jewish neighbourhood watch groups stepping up security around synagogues and schools.

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Al Jazeera

Anger at government challenge to mosques over ‘British identity’

London, United Kingdom – A new row has erupted between the British government and Muslim organisations after the minister responsible for community cohesion wrote to hundreds of imams calling on them to do more to tackle violent extremism and demonstrate “how faith in Islam can be part of British identity”.

Eric Pickles pictured at an Iftar event last year [Photo: www.gov.uk]

Eric Pickles said Muslims in Britain should be “proud of their faith and their country” [Photo: http://www.gov.uk ]

The letter, sent by Eric Pickles, the secretary of state for communities and local government, to every mosque in England, provoked an angry response from the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), which accused the government of peddling far-right arguments about integration.

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CNN

Celebrating Elvis at Denmark’s King-size Graceland

Randers, Denmark – If the King had lived, he would have been 80 on Thursday. And for Henrik Knudsen, this year brings another significant anniversary worth celebrating. Twenty-five years ago, he decided to quit his job selling power tools to become Denmark’s only professional Elvis Presley fan.

“I was a sales agent for a long time and I decided I didn’t want to be that anymore. I thought, imagine if I could be a full-time Elvis fan,” he says. “I knew it was a big leap but I felt like I just had to do it. And a few years later I was.”

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Al Jazeera

UK government ‘exploiting Paris attacks to curb civil liberties’

London, United Kingdom – Privacy and civil liberties campaigners have accused David Cameron, the British prime minister, of “cynically exploiting” last week’s attacks in Paris to call for even more stringent counterterrorism and surveillance powers than those already being controversially pushed through parliament.

David Cameron says the UK faces a "fanatical death cult of Islamist extremist violence" [Photo: @Number10gov]

David Cameron says the UK faces a “fanatical death cult of Islamist extremist violence” [Photo: @Number10gov]

Speaking earlier this week, Cameron pledged to give British security services greater capabilities to monitor and read online communications, and said countries such as the UK and France were facing a “fanatical death cult of Islamist extremist violence”.

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