Islamic charity probed after event celebrating sanctioned general raises concerns

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The Charity Commission has opened a compliance case into the Al-Tawheed Charitable Trust, after it conducted an event celebrating a deceased Iranian general. 

 

According to reports in the Times newspaper, it hosted an event celebrating Qasem Soleimani 48 hours after his death in which he was hailed as a “great martyr”. 

Soleimani had been subject to financial sanctions by the Treasury for terrorism and/or terrorist financing since 17 October 2011.

A spokesperson for the Charity Commission said: “We can confirm that we have an ongoing compliance case into the Al-Tawheed (TUCF) Charitable Trust in relation to serious concerns regarding events held at its premises.” 

As part of the compliance case, the regulator will assess information and work with trustees to determine any next steps. 

The charity did not respond to requests for comment. 

Background

Al-Tawheed Charitable Trust’s charitable objects are to relieve poverty and sickness of people practicing Islam, promote the faith and more. 

It owns and operates Kanoon Towhid, a repurposed Methodist church in Hammersmith, where the event is alleged to have taken place. 

The regulator’s website shows that the charity’s accounts are currently overdue by 23 days. 

According to its financial accounts ending September 2021, the charity had a total income of £16,500 and expenditure of £17,000. 

It has three trustees – two were appointed in 2020 and one in 2021. 

The Charity Commission issued an official warning to the Islamic Centre of England Ltd after it held an event in memory of the same general, Soleimani, in 2020. 

It ruled that the event put the charity’s reputation at risk. 

At the time, Tim Hopkins, assistant director of investigations and inquiries at the Charity Commission, said: “Any charity being associated with terrorism is completely unacceptable and we are concerned by the corrosive effect this might have on public confidence in this and other charities.”

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