Extremists attend more than 200 university eventsBy Tom Whitehead, Security Editor - The Telegraph

Hamza Tzortzis (Credit: telegraph.co.uk)

Hamza Tzortzis (Credit: telegraph.co.uk)

A dozen events featured speakers with links to the fanatical group Hizb ut Tahrir – a controversial organisation banned by the National Union of Students.

Extremists were invited to a host of events despite criticism from Theresa May, the Home Secretary, that universities were “complacent” in tackling the risk of radicalisation.

The research, by campaign group Student Rights, found a total of 214 university events featured known extremists last year.

The most frequent speaker was Hamza Tzortzis who was promoted at 48 events,

Mr Tzortzis has called for an Islamic state, expressed his hostility towards Western values and stated that: “We as Muslims reject the idea of freedom of speech, and even of freedom.”

Hizb ut-Tahrir was represented at six per cent of the events even thought the NUS has a policy not to give the organisation a platform.

The research also found eight events were moved off campuses following complaints while another ten were cancelled.

In other moves, 17 video or audio clips featuring the late terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki was shared online with students.

Rupert Sutton, Head Researcher at Student Rights said: “These statistics demonstrate that the presence of extremist preachers on campus is not a figment of people’s imaginations, but a serious issue that universities cannot afford to be complacent about.

“The prevalence of material featuring terrorists such as Anwar al-Awlaki is deeply concerning, as is the relative ease with which Hizb ut-Tahrir-linked videos and literature can be shared amongst students.

“We hope that universities will use these figures as an opportunity to examine their policies and ensure that they are keeping their students safe from those who would spread intolerance and hatred on our campuses.”

In 2011, Mrs May said universities were not taking the issue of radicalisation seriously enough and that it was too easy for Muslim extremists to form groups on campuses “without anyone knowing”.

Last year a report by Student Rights and the Henry Jackson Society warned Islamic extremists were using social networking sites to radicalise students.

Videos of armed insurgents and hate-filled speeches from al Qaeda figures had been posted on websites linked to Islamic societies at several leading universities.

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