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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 October 2006, 01:26 GMT 02:26 UK
Ramadan arrest advice 'is lunacy'
Muslim praying
The advice does not relate to on the spot arrests
An Islamic youth organisation has condemned as "lunacy" police advice not to execute arrest warrants against Muslims at prayer times during Ramadan.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) asked detectives not to make planned arrests for reasons of religious sensitivity.

But Mohammed Shafiq, from the Ramadhan Foundation, said: "It's stupid, lunacy, that police could even consider not arresting Muslims during Ramadan."

GMP said its advice was a "request for sensitivity" and not a ban on arrests.

'Community tensions'

The advice was e-mailed out to officers working in Moss Side, Hulme, Whalley Range, Rusholme, Fallowfield, Ardwick, Longsight, Gorton and Levenshulme.

The e-mail stressed the order did not apply to on-the-spot arrests, only the execution of arrest warrants.

We must all be equal under the law
Mohammed Shafiq
Ramadhan Foundation
Mr Shafiq said: "Greater Manchester Police have a history of policing the Muslim community with great sensitivity and understanding. That this idea was even thought of is shocking.

"I don't know where they get these ideas from and I'm glad an officer was clearly angry enough to leak the memo.

"Police shouldn't hesitate to arrest any Muslims they had planned to during Ramadan. We must all be equal under the law.

"If people think Muslims are immune from the law, it will only stir up tensions within the community."

A GMP statement said: "The month of Ramadan is an important time of the year for members of the Muslim community throughout the world.

"It is important that normal, planned policing activities and operations are maintained, while ensuring that officers are professional and respectful to members of the community while going about their duties."




SEE ALSO
Police to avoid Ramadan arrests
21 Oct 06 |  Manchester
Khan appeals for trouble-free Eid
02 Nov 05 |  Manchester

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