Muslim think tank to keep ties with Tariq Ramadan amid rape claims

Muzliza Mustafa

IRF founder Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa says the think tank will continue its collaboration with Tariq Ramadan until the rape allegations against him are proven. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, December 16, 2017.

MUSLIM think tank Islamic Renaissance Front (IRF) will continue its collaboration with renowned Islamist scholar Tariq Ramadan and remain impartial over rape allegations against the Oxford professor while letting justice take its course, IRF founder Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa said.

“We have to assume that he is innocent. To take an alternative view would be compromising on our principles,” said Dr Ahmad Farouk after the Bahasa Malaysia edition of Tariq’s book What I Believe in Kuala Lumpur today.

The translation was done by Pakatan Harapan (PH) secretary-general Saifuddin Abdullah and the project began two years ago.

Tariq and IRF have worked closely, with the scholar launching IRF in 2009. The academician has spoken in Malaysia three times, with the last visit in 2013.

In October, Tariq, a senior research fellow of St Antony’s College, was accused of rape by a French author who said he assaulted her in a Paris hotel room in 2012. She has accused him of rape, violent assault and intimidation in her report to the police.

The Swiss scholar has denied the claims and took a take leave of absence that was mutually agreed to with Oxford University, where he is professor of contemporary Islamic studies.

Oxford has said that Tariq’s leave of absence implied no presumption or acceptance of guilt.

Dr Ahmad Farouk admitted he was shocked when he heard of the allegations and felt it was not in Tariq’s character. He said IRF would continue to deal with the scholar professionally.

Since the first allegation, French and Swiss newspapers last week reported more accusations of rape and assault against Tariq by other women, some of whom claimed the attacks had taken place in the 1980s and 1990s while they were his students when he was teaching in Switzerland. – December 16, 2017.

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