Sharia-Compliant Financing Getting a Foothold in London Markets

A recent article in the Financial Times discusses London’s fixation to drive more banking services into its financial district by reaching out to Islamic investors. According to the article: “While others in the western world resist change, this government is embracing it: banging the drum for British businesses, seeking out new markets, welcoming overseas investment with open arms . . .”

Here in the U.S., the American Freedom Law Center has been at the forefront of the battle against sharia-compliant financing, which is another tentacle of civilization jihad. Indeed, AFLC and its allies have had enormous success slowing its growth in the U.S., whether through comprehensive policy reports, litigation, or even advising politicians such as Newt Gingrich. (Even The New York Times has noticed.) As a result, U.S. banks have increased their due diligence before jumping in with Islamist financiers.

Moreover, the article points out the problematic likelihood that sharia-compliant financiers, in exchange for access to its markets, could stipulate that the British government restrict its dealings with Israeli-owned businesses. Indeed, there are many fatwas forbidding investing with Israeli companies or companies with any ties to the “Occupation.” The London lawyers have been trying to get around the Israel/discrimination problem by disguising the forbidden investment fatwa from “Israeli” to “Zionist” to “any investment that might be used to support directly or indirectly the illegal occupation of Palestine” and similar formulas.

It must be noted that both the U.S. and the U.K. forbid discrimination based on nationality, especially in a sovereign or municipal bond offering such as by London itself. It will be interesting to see how London solves this problem.