Sabah Ahmedi says he was a victim of Islamophobia when he was younger, with people often calling him a ‘terrorist’ or ‘Osama Bin Laden’
By Unzela Khan
- 15:14, 10 NOV 2021
A London Imam has spoken out about his experience growing up in the UK as a Muslim and the hate he still gets.
Sabah Ahmedi says he was a victim of Islamophobia when he was younger, with people often calling him a ‘terrorist’ or ‘Osama Bin Laden’ – especially after the September 11, 2001 attacks.
Despite still being on the receiving end of hate, the 27-year-old, who is one of Britain’s youngest Imams, says he will not stop defending the religion.
With Islamophobia Awareness Month this month, comments from his social media accounts show the hate is widespread.
Sabah, from South London, said: “Online I still receive a lot of abuse, some people say ‘Islam is not compatible with the west.'”
‘They were looking at my wife as though I’d radicalised her’
Although he has now turned his comments off on TikTok, MyLondon has seen some of the hate he has received.
One person commented: “Doesn’t this dog ever stop barking.”
Another said: “What are you gaining out of this? Keep you beliefs to yourself! You’re bound to get hate chill out. Stop preaching your belief to others, we don’t care.”
Speaking to MyLondon, he recalled a recent event: “Me and my wife went for dinner one day and when we were on the Tube, two middle aged white guys started looking at us and shaking their heads.
“I asked what the issue was and they were taken aback that I had questioned them. My white wife was wearing a scarf, and to me, it seemed like they were looking at her thinking I radicalised her.
“When I went up to them they said, ‘no, we weren’t looking at you’ – but we were the only people on the Tube.”
Sabah has used his platform on social media to raise awareness about Muslims.
He said he encourages dialogue and for non-muslims to ask questions that they think might not be politically correct, as it helps people learn.
The Imam wants to create a safe space for others to be able to understand Islam.
He said: “If I don’t defend my faith I can’t expect anyone else to do it for me.”
However, despite being a voice against Islamophobia – Sabah has received a lot of hate online from other Muslims.
As part of the Ahmadiyya sect, a sect which most Muslims do not consider a part of Islam, Sabah has faced discrimination from Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
The Amadiyya Muslim Community, which was found in the 19th Century, believe that another Prophet, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (MGA), came after Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him).
As the Prophet Muhammed is considered to be the last Prophet by majority of Muslims, many claim that Ahmadiyya Muslims do not follow the truth.