Leaflets have reportedly been distributed in Manchester calling for a public ban on dogs, in order to keep the area pure for Muslims. But while some have claimed the leaflets are a hoax designed to stir up tensions, others are convinced the leaflets are being created by fundamentalist Muslims.
Residents in Manchester have taken to social media to report that they have received leaflets through their letterboxes calling on them to “have respect for us and our children” by not taking dogs out in public. “This area is home to a large Muslim community,” the leaflet advises, before explaining that dogs are considered impure in Islam.
— Suzanne Delaney (@scoobysue30) July 12, 2016
No it’s not a joke!, it’s been posted in letterboxes in Manchester! A nation of Dog lovers! WTF pic.twitter.com/XC2kcSBzem
— johnny peterson (@JPexsquaddie) July 12, 2016
— Gemma Winter (@GEMWINTER) July 12, 2016
The leaflet explains that, in a “multicultural nation”, British residents must “learn to understand and respect” the culture of Muslims living alongside them.
The leaflets are apparently being distributed by a campaign group called Public Purity, who on their website have called for the British people to “agree to some things that might make them feel uncomfortable”, in order for Muslims to feel “truly welcomed”.
The website sets out the group’s goal of a ban on dogs in all public spaces, including “restaurants, common areas and of course public transportation” to allow Muslims to remain pure. As dogs are considered to be impure by Islam, some Muslims hold they cannot be kept as pets or even touched.
“If dogs are not permitted to be present in public, Muslims could live their lives with a burden lifted from their shoulders and without having to fear being tainted with no fault of their own,” the website says, linking to a YouTube clip of an Islamic scholar explaining that it against Islam to keep a dog as a pet.
But neither the leaflet nor the website contain any contact details, nor is it clear who is behind the material, prompting claims that it has been set up by a British group intent on creating division within the community.
A local resident, Fayyaz Ali, 39 told the Manchester Evening News: “This has got to be a scam. I’m a Muslim and the Muslim law says that if you live in a country that is not Muslim, which is England, you respect the law of the land.
“The Muslim law does not apply in any different country. For example, my parents are from Pakistan. If I had a problem living here I should go back to Pakistan and live there.”
Other sceptics have tweeted that they believe the material to be a scam intended to “divide and conquer”.
— Ay Dapps (@ay_dapps) July 13, 2016
I think this is a fake account to aggravate the British. I’ll let you make your own mind up.
For Public Purityhttps://t.co/RiLrYE7cOv
— бесплатно дум 79 (@freedoom_79) July 12, 2016
And on Reddit, it has been pointed out that, while the website owners cannot be traced thanks to privacy blocks, the only image on the site is registered as having been created by “dominichancock7”.
Reddit user ‘The Real Dave Random’ commented: “That’s a traditional Muslim name if ever I heard one. On (sic), no, wait, the other thing…”
But others are less certain that the site is a false flag operation.
Reddit user ‘Salarian Scientist’ commented: “It would seem plausible to me yes. I know it is prohibited to keep dogs within one’s home as they keep angels out from houses.
“And I recall people in Morocco saying that if you are touched (even slightly) by a dog that you should do ‘Wuduu’ (ablution).”
And ‘Codjan’ is convinced it is real based on the language used: “The use of English here is definitely consistent with someone whose first language is not English, but has studied to a very high level – eloquent, rich in lexis and grammatical range but with occasional errors (…enable Muslims remain…) and unusual word choices (with the aspect being…). The MTI (mother tongue interference) hints heavily at Arabic as a first language for whoever wrote this.
“I simply don’t credit any fascist groups with the intelligence to fake it this well.”
The leaflet and website also feature Arabic script both in the written material and in the group’s logo, which reads ‘naqa’ (peace) in a stylised format.
The material is all the more suspicious as self-styled ‘Sharia patrols’ have sprung up in British cities over the last few years, attempting to place bans on the activities of locals in the name of Islam.
In May 2014 residents of Tower Hamlets were outraged after a note was pinned to a park fence reading: “Do not walk your dog here! Muslims do not like dogs. This is an Islamic area now.”
The previous year a gang of vigilantes calling themselves the ‘Muslim London Patrol’ were filmed confiscating alcohol from passers-by and shouting abuse at women and homosexuals out for the evening.
One gang member told a young woman wearing a short skirt: “You cannot dress like that in a Muslim area, this is a Muslim area,” while another forced a man to pour out the contents of a can of lager, saying: “This area is a Muslim area. No drink in this area … Alcohol is evil.”
Public Purity did not respond to Breitbart London’s request for comment.