14 April 2009
Man successful in libel claims against newspaper
A Muslim imam has been successful in his claims of libel against a newspaper.
Dr Taj Hargey, who is known for his progressive stance on religion, took action against the Muslim Weekly.
He sued the publication after it claimed that Muslim clerics had pulled out of a conference he organised in May 2006 because he was not Muslim but a member of the Qadiani or Ahmadiyya sect.
The paper also alleged that he had been dismissed from a previous post at Cape Town university because of his religious affiliations.
Dr Hargey successfully argued that he is a mainstream Sunni Muslim and that he was not sacked from his position at the university but rather left South Africa during apartheid to pursue a career abroad.
Responding to his legal victory, he said: "The historic case highlights the right to freedom and dissent within the British Muslim community."
Meanwhile, the Muslim Weekly - which is based in London - declined to comment on the case.