The chairman of a Birmingham mosque has been denounced by LGBT Muslim support group Imaan for linking homosexuality to paedophilia, murder and gambling.
On 12 March, at the request of his mosque, a question was removed from a BBC3 debate show filmed in the Birmingham Central Mosque, asking “when will it be right to be Muslim and gay”. The live programme featured Asifa Lahore, who calls himself Britain’s “first and only Muslim drag queen.”
However, Dr Naseem said it had been right to block the question from being asked on the show.
He wrote: “There are people with homosexual tendency in Muslim countries but they respect the law and control their desire as others do.
“Human beings do have weaknesses and tendencies which are not socially acceptable and so they try to have a control over them and do not give in.
“A compulsive murderer, gambler, paedophile etc. could present the same logic and ask for accommodation by the society. Are we going to accept on the basis of freedom of action?”
He even suggested that Lahore is not Muslim, saying he “does not know his religion and has not got much links with it.”
“He would have, otherwise, known that it is prohibited in Islam. If he wants to persue [sic] his inclination then he is free to leave Islam and follow any ideology that suits him.”
According to Naseem, the BBC misled the mosque and only told them that homosexuality would be discussed hours before the live programme.
In response, Imaan released a statement saying: “maan is deeply disappointed with Birmingham Mosque Chairman, Dr Mohammad Naseem’s comments about the mosque’s withdrawal from hosting a BBC3 discussion on gay Muslims.”
It added: “Notwithstanding Naseem’s claim that he was misquoted, we wish to highlight how his logic is used by many Muslim leaders throughout the world to justify often deadly persecution of sexual minorities. Among other things, Imaan supports numerous sexual minority asylum seekers fleeing violent persecution from their countries of origin, frequently justified in the name of Islam.”