The main umbrella body representing UK Muslims  - The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has congratulated Sadiq Khan as the new Mayor of London. Dr Shuja Shafi, its Secretary General said: I congratulate Sadiq Khan for his victory. His ready wit and resilience is an inspiring model for young people particularly from minority backgrounds aiming for a career in the tough world of politics.”

“London is a great cosmopolitan city much loved and admired for its multicultural and multifaith diversity.  The election of a Muslim-heritage mayor will serve to renew bonds of cooperation between London’s communities and City Hall. This includes establishing a more constructive relationship with the Police so that we can keep our communities safe and secure. It also means working together to tackle social deprivation, developing further our cultural capital and making our sprawling metropolis greener.”

“Above all, we look forward to the new Mayor of London becoming a figure of unity for all Londoners and help to forge fresh new bonds between communities.  Sadiq has demonstrated remarkable dignity in the face of hatred and suspicion about his religious background. Muslims and non-Muslims, including prominent Conservatives, have rightly spoken out against the divisive campaign pursued by the Conservative Party.  This is not a party political comment. We know that many Muslims would have voted for Mr Khan’s chief opponent, Mr Zac Goldsmith who know him to be a decent and honourable man who used to actively engage with the Muslim community.”

“It is most unfortunate that a Londoner who happens to be Muslim, and has gone out of his way to repudiate extremists, has nevertheless been smeared with the extremist brush, as has a London imam who is – unjustly – unable to challenge claims made in Parliament that he supports Daesh or terrorism. Such smear-by-association has become all too common for Muslims and Muslim organisations. It is a cancer blighting sections of our political and media class and has infected the solemn business of government.”

“For the real extremists we are all opposed to, such tactics will only provide fresh new examples of a society not willing to accept Muslims for who they are. We urge the Conservative Party to reflect and learn from this disreputable period of campaigning so that we can all draw a line and move on.”