Glasgow & West Scotland

Asad Shah death: Shopkeeper 'killer' statement condemned

Asad Shah
Image caption Asad Shah died after being found badly injured near his shop in the Shawlands area of Glasgow on Thursday

A man who issued a statement claiming he killed a Glasgow shopkeeper because he "disrespected" Islam has been condemned by Ahmadiyya Muslim leaders.

Murder accused Tanveer Ahmed, 32, from Bradford, said in a statement he killed 40-year-old Asad Shah as he had falsely claimed to be a prophet.

Mr Shah was an Ahmadiyya, a group known for its peaceful interfaith concerns.

Ahmadiyya Muslim leaders in Glasgow have now called for other Muslim leaders to condemn the statement.

In a statement issued on Wednesday through his lawyer, Mr Ahmed said: "Asad Shah disrespected the messenger of Islam the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. Mr Shah claimed to be a Prophet."

He added: "If I had not done this others would and there would have been more killing and violence in the world."

Image caption Ahmadiyya Muslim leaders in Glasgow

Glasgow's Ahmadiyya Muslim leaders issued a statement in response stating Tanveer Ahmed had said that he killed Mr Shah because he 'disrespected' the Prophet of Islam.

The statement said: "This is deeply disturbing and sets an extremely dangerous precedent, as it justifies the killing of anyone - Muslim or non-Muslim - whom an extremist considers to have shown disrespect to Islam.

"In some countries Ahmadiyya Muslim members, Christians and people of other faiths are routinely attacked and murdered by extremists for accusations of blasphemy.

"Such killings are completely against the teachings of Islam.

Image caption Floral tributes have been placed near the scene

"We must not let the same mindset of hate and violence take root here in Glasgow, and for that matter, the UK and anywhere in the world.

"The Ahmadiyya Muslim community urges the government and law enforcement agencies to take all possible measures to root out all forms of religious hatred, intolerance and sectarianism.

"If extremists are given a free hand, we will come to see the same levels of religious hatred and persecution here in the UK that we see in some Muslim countries.

"It is the firm belief of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community that all people should be able to peacefully practice their faith without fear of persecution or violence.

"We urge all religious bodies, especially Muslim leaders and Imams, to come out in public to condemn this statement made by Tanveer Ahmed, so that all Muslims know this is never acceptable in Islam.

"This will go a long way to help eliminate all extremists."

Image caption Mr Shah was found seriously injured outside his shop in Shawlands

Mr Ahmed is accused of killing Mr Shah outside his shop in Glasgow's Shawlands area two weeks ago.

The shopkeeper, who had moved from Pakistan to Glasgow almost 20 years ago, was found with serious injuries outside his shop on Minard Road on 24 March. He was pronounced dead in hospital.

Mr Shah was killed just hours after he posted an Easter message on Facebook to his customers.

The message said: "Good Friday and a very happy Easter, especially to my beloved Christian nationx"

During the police investigation officers claimed the incident was "religiously prejudiced" and confirmed both men were Muslims.

Mr Ahmed has been charged with murder and made a second court appearance on Wednesday where he made no plea and was remanded in custody.

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