Former Hizb ut-Tahrir member Asif Khan backed by Labour chairman Mike Jackson

First published in News Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A Watford Labour councillor has been backed the local party chairman after it emerged he was a senior member of the radical Islamist group, Hizb ut-Tahrir.

Yesterday the Watford Observer revealed that Asif Khan, a representative of Leggatts ward, sat on the group’s executive and penned hard-line articles for its Khilafah magazine.

In articles and a pamphlet written between 2003 and 2004 Councillor Khan argued Muslims should not engage in UK politics and work to establish Islam in non-Islamic states.

The 36-year-old has said he joined the organisation in the early 2000s as he was angry at the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq but has since completely rejected it ideology since leaving in 2007.

Councillor Khan joined the Watford Labour Party in 2010 and was elected to Watford Borough Council in 2011.

Mike Jackson, the chairman of the Watford Labour Party, said he was not aware of Councillor Khan’s involvement in Hizb ut-Tahrir until this week.

He said after discussing the matter with Councillor Khan, who he described as "a highly respected and hard working local councillor", he was satisfied he no longer held hard-line views.

However, the matter will be discussed by the party’s executive next month.

Mr Jackson said: "Insofar as I am aware, we did not know about his involvement with this group until last week. I arranged to meet with Asif after he made me aware of this pamphlet to discuss this with him.

"I am satisfied that the all the views he expressed in this pamphlet including that Muslims should not engage with UK political parties are completely different from the views he holds today. The context is that the pamphlet was written in the wake of the Iraq war in 2004, when the leaders of all three main UK political parties were supporting the war.

"The matter will be discussed by the executive committee of Watford Labour Party at its next regular meeting in December and I am confident that they will continue to hold Asif in the same high regard that they have always done."

Comments (11)

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11:54am Wed 14 Nov 12

theturpster says...

and whilst we are at it, lets welcome back Gary Glitter back into the music business, because he has changed his views as well......

Consider this a lost vote.
and whilst we are at it, lets welcome back Gary Glitter back into the music business, because he has changed his views as well...... Consider this a lost vote. theturpster
  • Score: 0

4:42pm Wed 14 Nov 12

The Rover says...

theturpster wrote:
and whilst we are at it, lets welcome back Gary Glitter back into the music business, because he has changed his views as well......

Consider this a lost vote.
Maybe Gary Glitter should get into politics instead. After all, politicians screw everyone, regardless of age.
[quote][p][bold]theturpster[/bold] wrote: and whilst we are at it, lets welcome back Gary Glitter back into the music business, because he has changed his views as well...... Consider this a lost vote.[/p][/quote]Maybe Gary Glitter should get into politics instead. After all, politicians screw everyone, regardless of age. The Rover
  • Score: 0

5:08pm Wed 14 Nov 12

gusgreen says...

What a surprise Mr Jackson didn't know but now he does he still backs Khan!

This is so typical of the left wing ,if it been a right wing party with an ex BNP/EDL member as a councillor all hell would have been let loose

Come on Jackson grow a pair!
What a surprise Mr Jackson didn't know but now he does he still backs Khan! This is so typical of the left wing ,if it been a right wing party with an ex BNP/EDL member as a councillor all hell would have been let loose Come on Jackson grow a pair! gusgreen
  • Score: 0

5:08pm Wed 14 Nov 12

MaryWatford says...

When is Mike Jackson going to stand down. Under his Chairmanship Labour in Watford has gone down hill. This is another wrong decision from him.
When is Mike Jackson going to stand down. Under his Chairmanship Labour in Watford has gone down hill. This is another wrong decision from him. MaryWatford
  • Score: 0

6:40pm Wed 14 Nov 12

Arthur says...

MaryWatford wrote:
When is Mike Jackson going to stand down. Under his Chairmanship Labour in Watford has gone down hill. This is another wrong decision from him.
I'll second that, long past his sell-by date.

Remind me, how long ago was it that the people of Woodside rejected him?

I'm surprised that Watford Labour Party have put up with him for so long, Watford's own Niccolo Machiavelli

It's interesting that Machiavelli's best-known book, "Il Principe," according to Wiki, contains a number of maxims concerning politics, but rather than the more traditional subject of a hereditary prince, it concentrates on the possibility of a "new prince." To retain power, the hereditary prince must carefully maintain the socio-political institutions to which the people are accustomed; whereas a new prince has the more difficult task in ruling, since he must first stabilize his new-found power in order to build an enduring political structure. He asserted that social benefits of stability and security could be achieved in the face of moral corruption. Aside from that, Machiavelli believed that public and private morality had to be understood as two different things in order to rule well. As a result, a ruler must be concerned not only with reputation, but also positively willing to act immorally at the right times. As a political scientist, Machiavelli emphasizes the occasional need for the methodical exercise of brute force, deceit, and so on.

I bet that sounds familiar to Watford Labour Party members past (or should that be passed?) and present.
[quote][p][bold]MaryWatford[/bold] wrote: When is Mike Jackson going to stand down. Under his Chairmanship Labour in Watford has gone down hill. This is another wrong decision from him.[/p][/quote]I'll second that, long past his sell-by date. Remind me, how long ago was it that the people of Woodside rejected him? I'm surprised that Watford Labour Party have put up with him for so long, Watford's own Niccolo Machiavelli It's interesting that Machiavelli's best-known book, "Il Principe," according to Wiki, contains a number of maxims concerning politics, but rather than the more traditional subject of a hereditary prince, it concentrates on the possibility of a "new prince." To retain power, the hereditary prince must carefully maintain the socio-political institutions to which the people are accustomed; whereas a new prince has the more difficult task in ruling, since he must first stabilize his new-found power in order to build an enduring political structure. He asserted that social benefits of stability and security could be achieved in the face of moral corruption. Aside from that, Machiavelli believed that public and private morality had to be understood as two different things in order to rule well. As a result, a ruler must be concerned not only with reputation, but also positively willing to act immorally at the right times. As a political scientist, Machiavelli emphasizes the occasional need for the methodical exercise of brute force, deceit, and so on. I bet that sounds familiar to Watford Labour Party members past (or should that be passed?) and present. Arthur
  • Score: 0

8:30pm Wed 14 Nov 12

Nascot says...

Leopard, spots.. springs to mind here
Leopard, spots.. springs to mind here Nascot
  • Score: 0

9:42pm Wed 14 Nov 12

dontknowynot says...

just wondering have any of you guys actually met Asif, he does seem to be a nice person and care about his fellow human beings. I find this to be the case with some people involved in politics locally and maybe that is why people voted for him. Mike Jackson should be commended for standing by him, when the easy thing to do would be to **** him. Well done Mike!!
just wondering have any of you guys actually met Asif, he does seem to be a nice person and care about his fellow human beings. I find this to be the case with some people involved in politics locally and maybe that is why people voted for him. Mike Jackson should be commended for standing by him, when the easy thing to do would be to **** him. Well done Mike!! dontknowynot
  • Score: 0

9:44pm Wed 14 Nov 12

dontknowynot says...

opps Dam with an n on the end gets converted to ****
opps Dam with an n on the end gets converted to **** dontknowynot
  • Score: 0

10:13pm Wed 14 Nov 12

LSC says...

Interesting. When Troy Deeney was actually sent to prison for kicking someone in the head, the overwhelming opinion on this site seemed to be that we all make mistakes, we all deserve a second chance and we can all change.

But on this subject it seems the complete opposite opinion is rife, although this guy hasn't actually broken any laws that I'm aware of.

Therefore the conclusion must be either people are very odd, or some people will use anything for political gain.
Interesting. When Troy Deeney was actually sent to prison for kicking someone in the head, the overwhelming opinion on this site seemed to be that we all make mistakes, we all deserve a second chance and we can all change. But on this subject it seems the complete opposite opinion is rife, although this guy hasn't actually broken any laws that I'm aware of. Therefore the conclusion must be either people are very odd, or some people will use anything for political gain. LSC
  • Score: 0

11:20am Thu 15 Nov 12

HertsPeter says...

Deeney should have been released by WFC. Sure he 'paid his debt' but should have been let go
Deeney should have been released by WFC. Sure he 'paid his debt' but should have been let go HertsPeter
  • Score: 0

3:44pm Thu 15 Nov 12

garston tony says...

It seems some people believe the saying is guilty until proven otherwise. And even when they're proven innocent they're still guilty.

I doubt there is anyone who has never changed their opinion about anything ever. If they say they haven't then they're either liars or some of their opinions are wrong or they are blooming saints! People change, fact of life. Instead of finding him guilty today about something he believed when he was younger (don’t forget there were plenty of non Muslims who were passionately against the war in Iraq) how's about looking at his record since becoming a cllr 3 years ago? That’s far more relevant isn't it.

But that’s too hard. What do some thinking and looking for yourselves?!?! Get lost, you'd rather be a sheep and believe what you’re fed. After all you're not the only sheep doing that and its safer in a crowd. And you have someone to blame for all the problems in your lives too. Bonus.

By the way not saying he isn't still an extremist in lambs clothing, who knows I don’t. But it doesn’t look that way to me going on his past three years as a cllr. Just saying how's about some actual evidence before you get all medieval and join the witch hunt.


And well said LSC about Deeney
It seems some people believe the saying is guilty until proven otherwise. And even when they're proven innocent they're still guilty. I doubt there is anyone who has never changed their opinion about anything ever. If they say they haven't then they're either liars or some of their opinions are wrong or they are blooming saints! People change, fact of life. Instead of finding him guilty today about something he believed when he was younger (don’t forget there were plenty of non Muslims who were passionately against the war in Iraq) how's about looking at his record since becoming a cllr 3 years ago? That’s far more relevant isn't it. But that’s too hard. What do some thinking and looking for yourselves?!?! Get lost, you'd rather be a sheep and believe what you’re fed. After all you're not the only sheep doing that and its safer in a crowd. And you have someone to blame for all the problems in your lives too. Bonus. By the way not saying he isn't still an extremist in lambs clothing, who knows I don’t. But it doesn’t look that way to me going on his past three years as a cllr. Just saying how's about some actual evidence before you get all medieval and join the witch hunt. And well said LSC about Deeney garston tony
  • Score: 0

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