Amazon has allowed its U.K. users to donate money to a group whose key figure has espoused hardline Islamist beliefs described as “misogynistic, racist and homophobic” and called for a global Islamic caliphate, the Times of London reported Monday.
The Muslim Research and Development Fund (MRDF) is one of several groups that have received donations through Amazon Smile, which launched in the U.K. last year. Under the program, shoppers can select an organization which will receive 0.5 percent of the purchase price of Amazon products.
Haitham al-Haddad, the MRDF’s founder and former chairman, has been called “one of the most dangerous men in Britain” by the counter-extremist Quilliam Foundation due to his adherence to the Salafi movement within Sunni Islam. Terror groups such as Al Qaeda have embraced Salafism’s tenants of jihad across the world.
According to the Times, while Haddad has criticized terrorist attacks against “innocent civilians,” he also has stated that Muslims ultimately will conquer “the enemies of Islam” and establish a regime that will deploy the death penalty for adultery and refusing to follow the Muslim faith.
“I have received so many requests from western women who committed adultery,” the Times quoted Haddad as saying in 2012. “They were begging me to help them to find a way to a Muslim country to be stoned to death.” Spokesmen for Haddad previously have said that his statements were taken out of context.
Sara Khan, the British government’s counter-extremism commissioner, told the paper that Haddad’s views “promote a supremacist ‘us versus them’ worldview that wrongly makes Muslims feel that they can’t be fully British.”
In a statement obtained by Fox News, Amazon said it relied on a regulator, the Charity Commission for England and Wales, to determine which organizations were eligible to take part in Amazon Smile.
“If a charity no longer has charitable status because that organization supports, encourages or promotes intolerance or discrimination and has been removed from the Commission’s register, we will remove them from the service,” the statement continued, adding that Amazon had “referred these allegations to the Commission and will be conducting a full review to ensure they do not violate our policies.”
The Charity Commission for England and Wales told the Times that Haddad had resigned from the MDRF’s board in 2014 after it raised concerns “about his suitability to serve as a trustee.” However, the paper reported that Haddad maintained close ties to the organization and led a fundraising campaign earlier this year.
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