Govt to provide £117m security funding to mosques

London Central Mosque Editorial credit: Kam Hus /

Ahead of a major announcement on “extremism,” the government has announced that it will provide British Muslim institutions with more than £117 million of protective security funding over the next four years.

The funding will be used to protect mosques, Muslim faith schools and other community centres and this year the government has made up to £29.4 million available.

However, Muslim commentators are widely seeing the move as a “softener” to deflect away accusations of Islamophobia before a major announcement which is expected to label vast swathes of the Muslim community as “extremists.”

This money allocation follows the Prime Minister’s pledge to provide more than £70 million over the next four years to the Community Security Trust to protect Jewish community sites.

According to government, funding was allocated to reflect the number of community sites used by each faith, with British Muslims making up 14 times more of England and Wales’ population than British Jews.

In a statement the government said: “Concerningly, recent events in the Middle East since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas conflict have been used by some as an excuse to stir up indefensible hatred against both faith groups.

James Cleverly. Pic: UK Parliament

“Today’s announcement marks a package of longer-term support to provide reassurance that anti-Muslim abuse, threats or harassment or any form of hate crime will not be tolerated.

Sign up for regular updates straight to your inbox

Subscribe to our newsletter and stay updated on the latest news and updates from around the Muslim world!

“The funding will provide protective security measures to ensure the UK’s Muslim community can be, and just as importantly, can feel safe. Measures include technology such as CCTV, alarm systems and secure perimeter fencing at mosques, Muslim faith community centres, and Muslim faith schools.”

Home Secretary James Cleverly said: “Anti-Muslim hatred has absolutely no place in our society. We will not let events in the Middle East be used as an excuse to justify abuse against British Muslims.

“The Prime Minister has made clear that we stand with Muslims in the UK. That is exactly why we have committed to this funding, giving reassurance and confidence to UK Muslims at a time when it is crucially needed.”

However, 5Pillars editor Roshan Muhammed Salih has encouraged Muslim institutions to decline the funding.

Writing on X, he said: “I would encourage mosques NOT to apply for this money because in my view this is just a way for government to try and control Islamic institutions. For example, they will doubtless link money allocation to mosques aligning with guidelines on ‘extremism’ and they will check speakers that mosques invite etc. This money simply isn’t worth it. You can raise much more from your own congregations anyway. Much better to preserve whatever independence you have.”

He added: “The Tory government has softened Muslims up with a pledge to provide mosques with money for security just before making a statement labelling vast swathes of Muslims as extremists. This is how politics works – carrot and stick. Chuck a few quid their way to deflect accusations of Islamophobia just before delivering a hammer blow to the community.”

Meanwhile, an Islamic Human Rights Commission spokesman said: “This is a bribe which only serves to highlight the disdain with which Muslims are treated by government. Instead of genuinely consulting the Muslim community and engaging with it to plan and deliver its own security as is done with Jewish organisations, the government is trying to appease us with a few crumbs that will barely touch the problem.

“More importantly, coming as it does ahead of another ratcheting up of ‘anti-extremism’ policy one has to ask to what extent the conditions attached to this money will be used to further demonise the Muslim community.”

Add your comments below

Previous articleBlood Brothers #124: Labour, Socialism, Corbyn, Galloway & the Muslim Vote
Next articleNamed Muslim groups slam Michael Gove’s controversial extremism speech