Islamist Stickers Declare 'Gay Free Zone' in East London, Warn of Punishment
Stickers declaring the area a "gay free zone" and warning that "Allah is severe in punishment" have popped up around East London.
The stickers were distributed around the Whitechapel, Shoreditch and Poplar areas over the weekend. Specifically, they were targeted at schools and pubs, including the gay-friendly George and Dragon.
Equality campaigner Peter Tatchell – who has been attacked by Muslim groups three times in the capital – condemned the behaviour.
He said: "These stickers are part of a trend by Islamists and fundamentalists to target LGBT people. It is happening at universities and in communities. The main victims of this hate-mongering are LGBT Muslims.
Police are working to identify those who posted the stickers, which have been removed:
"A minority of homophobes blinded by their hate and closed minded views are trying to gain power and wider voice by publicly putting up banners targeting the LGBT community," said Ali Hilli of Iraqi LGBT.
"This small group of narrow minded people do not represent Islam or the Muslim community. In fact, a sentiment of rejection and condemnation for such a small group is growing among all Muslims. It is our duty to stop them and stand up to them whether we are Muslims, Jews or Christians."
A spokesperson for Tower Hamlets council told us: “We work hard to actively foster a climate of acceptance and tolerance, and combat all forms of discrimination and harassment within the borough. We are appalled by the actions of those who have produced and posted these stickers. We treat issues like this very seriously, and these incidents are being investigated by the borough's Hate Crime Team who are working alongside the local police."