A private Muslim school in Yorkshire has been exposed for teaching an extreme form of Islam, promoting classic anti-Semitic conspiracies that Jews are engaged in a global conspiracy to take over the world and that adopting British customs is forbidden.
The Islamic Tarbiyah Academy in Dewsbury teaches 140 primary school children in an after-school madrasa and runs full-time classes for over-16s and adults.
Mufti Zubair Dudha, the centre’s founder and head, is a respected cleric from the orthodox Deobandi sect which is thought to control half of all mosques and madrasas in the UK.
In one leaflet Mr Dudha quotes the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an early 20th Century anti-Semitic forgery, which claims to prove Jewish people are engaged in a global conspiracy.
He claims that colourful pictures, films, magazines and sporting celebrities are part of the conspiracy to “poison the thinking and minds” of young Muslim people.
“The various forms of distractions have been successful to considerable extent in achieving their objectives,” he wrote.
Other leaflets and newsletters, some of which are distributed to Deobandi mosques, say all mixed-sex institutions are evil, warn Muslims not to adopt British customs, ban the watching of TV, and tell women not to go out to work and to be fully covered before leaving the house.
In a section on jihad he tells Muslims they should be prepared to “expend … even life” to create a world organised “according to Allah’s just order”.
The school website says its aim is to “create a sense of discipline, based upon an enlightened comprehension of moral and ethical values, as is the crying need of the hour all over the world.”
The Dewsbury area has a recent history of disaffected youth becoming radicalised, being home to Britain’s youngest suicide bomber, its youngest convicted terrorist, and one of the 7/7 bombers.
Keith Vaz, who chairs the Home Affairs Select Committee, told Sky News he believes the centre’s teachings are dangerous.
“After what we have seen in Paris and in Brussels and the way in which the Muslim community has come out so strongly in favour of peace and tolerance, I think these kinds of leaflets serve no purpose but to divide in a poisonous and totally reckless way,” he said.
The Department of Education confirmed it is investigating what it described as “serious allegations”.
A spokesman said: “While it would be inappropriate to comment on the specific investigations of these institutions, we are clear that extremism has no place in our society and we are determined to protect children from it.”
The school said it was “astonished” by the allegations, adding its focus is on spiritual activities, and “political activities are not of primary concern.”
A statement said: “Rather than promoting extreme views, the Islamic Tarbiyah Academy has, and will, continue to work within the community, along with others, including the local authorities, to try and counter extremism. Any suggestions to the contrary are unfounded to say the least.”