lawyer defends Prophet (PBUH) to win defamation case

Controversial writer and columnist Julie Burchill has issued a 600-word apology to journalist Ash Sarkar and agreed to pay substantial damages for a two-week campaign of abuse against her.

In Burchill’s apology, Ms Burchill admitted making defamatory comments about Ms Sarkar, including that she “worshipped a paedophile” and also claimed Sarkar was an Islamist and a hypocrite.

She added: “I should not have sent these tweets, some of which included racist and misogynist comments regarding Ms Sarkar’s appearance and her sex life. I was also wrong to have ‘liked’ other posts on Facebook and Twitter about her, which were offensive, including one which called for her to kill herself and another which speculated whether she had been a victim of FGM (female genital mutilation).”

The damages – the amount of which has not been revealed – were agreed in an out-of-court settlement.

Ms Sarkar, who is also a political activist, told the BBC: “The comments were shocking and incredibly upsetting, and they also kicked off a lot of abuse from other people on social media. People speculated [on] whether I’m really a woman, really a Muslim, and I was subjected to rape threats and threats of physical violence.”

“The intensity of the abuse, along with Julie Burchill’s continuing derogatory posts about me, severely impacted my mental health. I couldn’t sleep and had bouts of trembling and heart palpitations. For the first time in my life, I was prescribed anti-anxiety medication.”

Julie Burchall’s full statement

Zillur Rahman, Sarkar’s solicitor, added: “I am delighted for Ash, it really is a resounding victory. As a Muslim myself, this case meant more because of the grossly offensive comment made concerning Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), who is dear to all Muslims.

“This case really does highlight the dangers of people thinking that the law does not apply to them on social media – the costs could be severe. It shows that words have consequences. We nevertheless welcome Julie’s approach in making a prompt concession of the claim and her fulsome apology which starts to make amends for the harm done.”

FUND HONEST INDEPENDENT MUSLIM JOURNALISM

Donate today and help us tell the stories that matter. Together we can make a difference

Donate today and help us tell the stories that matter.
Together we can make a difference

The mainstream media has been justifying genocide in Gaza. Islamophobia and censorship are the norm. We're changing that. Our journalism has reached over 300M impressions on social media since October 7th. On TV, our rolling news coverage has featured key figures like Husam Zomlot, Avi Shlaim, Gideon Levy and Jeremy Corbyn.

We need your support to reveal the truth and ensure our voices are heard. Donate today.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

TOP STORIES

RELATED STORIES

DONATE TO GOOD CAUSES
THIS DHUL HIJJAH

DONATE TO GOOD
CAUSES THIS DHUL HIJJAH

Give your
zakat and
sadaqah
to trusted charities.

Give your zakat and sadaqah to trusted charities.

Our 100% donation policy means every penny goes directly to your favourite charities.

Automate your donations over the first 10 days of Dhul Hijjah and make the most of these blessed days

CONTACT INFORMATION

Islam Channel
Media House
428-432 Ley Street
London
IG2 7BS

+(44) 207 374 4511