Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has been made a patron of the Muslim anti-hate crime campaign group, Tell Mama.

He is one of the first openly gay persons appointed to a senior role in a mainstream, non-gay Muslim organisation.

Tell Mama maps, measures and monitors anti-Muslim prejudice and supports victims of anti-Muslim hatred.

Director of Tell Mama, Fiyaz Mughal, said: “Peter has been a beacon for human rights for over four decades.

“He campaigns wholeheartedly against all forms of intolerance and discrimination, as do we, including anti-Muslim prejudice, homophobia, and anti-Semitism.

“He is an outstanding excellent addition to the Tell Mama fold and we are proud to be associated with him.”

Commenting on his appointment, Peter Tatchell said: “I am honoured to become a patron of Tell Mama, which does vital work monitoring, reporting and countering anti-Muslim prejudice, discrimination and hate crime – and supporting the victims.

“I hope that by taking up this position I can help build bridges between the Muslim and LGBT communities. We share a similar experience of intolerance and victimisation. I want to see us working together for our common good, so that we can live together in a society without hatred, discrimination and violence.

“With the rise of anti-Muslim hate groups like the British National Party (BNP) and English Defence League (EDL), the work of Tell Mama is more important than ever.

“While the tiny minority of Islamist extremists – and fanatics from all faiths and none – must be challenged, we also need to challenge the unjustified demonisation of the general Muslim population.”

He added: “Freedom of religious and non-religious beliefs are fundamental human rights that we must defend and promote. Tell Mama does just that: it takes a stand against hate, in defence of Muslim people. My admiration and congratulations.”