London, Mar.26 (ANI): Britain’s broadcasting watchdog OFCOM has launched an investigation against the country’s leading Muslim TV channel – the Islam Channel – after it was accused of encouraging “marital rape” and promoting hatred and intolerance.
OFCOM took the decision to investigate after being handed a major report by counter-terrorism think tank Quilliam, reports the Daily Express.
The London-based Islam Channel has a worldwide audience of two million.
The report claims the Islam Channel’s presenters and guests “regularly make derogatory statements about women and their role in society”.
In one programme, a guest tells viewers that Muslim women cannot refuse their husbands’ sexual advances.
Another presenter said women caused the “main sources” of problems facing modern society.
The think tank also accused the channel of advertising talks by extremist cleric Anwar al-Awlaki who has alleged links with Al Qaeda.
An OFCOM spokesman said: “This report raises some serious allegations. We will investigate where our rules may have been broken.”
In 2007, OfCOM fined the Islam Channel 30,000-pounds for breaking rules on political impartiality by showing programmes hosted by candidates of George Galloway’s Respect Party during the 2006 local election.
A spokesman for the Islam Channel, available in the UK to satellite viewers, said last night that it “promotes the role of women in society and that is why almost half of those working at Islam Channel are women.”
“We strongly reject all forms of extremism. We condemn unreservedly all forms of violence and the killing of innocent people regardless of their faith and ethnicity.” (ANI)