UK Government Investigates Tax Money Going to Iranian Backed Charity That Hailed Qasem Soleimani

FILE - In this March 27, 2015 file photo released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, commander of Iran's Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, sits in a religious ceremony at a mosque in the residence of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Tehran, Iran. A …
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UK officials are investigating an Iranian linked charity that receives taxpayer funding after it hailed Qasem Soleimani as a “martyr”.

The Islamic Centre of England (ICE), according to reports an Iranian backed charity with assets exceding £4 million, has come under investigation by the Charity Commission and Whitehall officials. The investigation follows the mosque organising an event over the weekend in which thousands gathered to memorialize Qasem Soleimani, the former commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

At the gathering, Seyed Moosavi, the fifty-one-year-old director of the centre and — he claims — UK representative of Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran, eulogized Soleimani as a “dedicated soldier of Islam”, adding that the American drone strike that killed the general was committed by “the most wicked members of the human race”.

Under the charity gift aid scheme in the UK, the centre is entitled to receive up to £150,000 per year from tax-payers, according to The Times.

“Taxpayers will be horrified that an organisation which lights candles for the likes of Soleimani, has charitable status in this country”, said Paul Stott, a research fellow at the Henry Jackson Society think tank.

Scott said that the Islamic Centre is “an important outpost of Iran’s theocratic regime”, adding: “Here the mullahs take advantage of the open nature of our liberal democracy, enjoying political and religious freedoms they would never dream of extending to minorities in Iran.”

“Given the affection in which the murderous Qasem Soleimani was clearly held by the congregation at the ICE, and threats emanating from Iran’s leadership to seek revenge for his death, the authorities will have to keep a careful eye on events in this part of London”, he concluded.

On its website, the Islamic Centre of England celebrated the “martyrdom” of Soleimani, who Breitbart News’ Aaron Klein dubbed the “Osama bin Laden of the Shiite world”, for his role in organising Iranian state-sponsored terrorist acts across the Middle East.

“During the forty years of the venerated life of the Islamic republic, General Solaymani was consistently present on the battlefield with the devils and the diabolic powers of the world”, the Islamic Centre wrote.

In response to the event at the centre, officials in Whitehall have launched an investigation into the group’s finances and a separate investigation will be conducted by the nation’s charity regulator.

“We are aware of a vigil held by the Islamic Centre of England over the weekend and publications on its website. We will be contacting the charity to seek further information”, a Charity Commission spokesperson said.

In recently uncovered footage, the far-left leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, in a speech given at the Islamic Centre of England, praised the theocratic regime in Tehran for its “tolerance” of other faiths and traditions, despite the Iranian government’s policy of executing ‘apostates’ who abandon Islam.

The seventy-year-old socialist has also come under fire for accepting thousands of pounds to appear on Iranian state television, just one year after giving the speech at the Islamic Centre.

Follow Kurt on Twitter at @KurtZidulka

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