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Last Updated: Tuesday, 10 July 2007, 13:11 GMT 14:11 UK
New forum for Bristol's Muslims
Bristol Central Mosque
Most of the city's mosques have joined the forum
A new Muslim group in Bristol aimed at tackling Islamophobia and extremism has held its inaugural meeting.

The Muslim Forum aims to be "...the most diverse and representative forum the Muslim community in Bristol and the South West has ever seen".

It brings together independently constituted Muslim organisations and Mosques in the city to tackle what it describes as issues of common concern.

About 30 organisations have signed up, including most of the city's mosques.

'Assist police'

Mahmoud Matan, of the Somalian organisation, AMANA Education Trust, said: "The purpose of the Forum is for the Muslim community to consider a range of socio-economic issues affecting it, including criminal extremism and Islamophobia."

Cllr Peter Hammond added: "Every responsible Muslim organisation in Bristol, including the Bristol Muslim Cultural Society, has condemned what one national Muslim organisation rightly called the sinister plot of the recent terrorist attacks in London and Glasgow.

"They have also called for all members of their faith to come forward and assist the police.

"Together, we all need to support these organisations' determined efforts to help the campaign against terrorism - and reject any hatred directed against the Muslim citizens of Bristol, who are overwhelmingly peaceful, hard-working and decent members of our community."

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