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Know Your Rights: Guidance For Masajid & Charities About Palestine Solidarity

December 18, 2023

Download this document as a PDF here.



Masajid are the hubs of the Muslim community. They are central places of gathering and sources of knowledge. As a masjid or charity you should not shy away from or fear raising awareness about the Palestinian cause.

  • You can and should raise the issue at the Minbar as part of Friday Khutbahs. Your Khutbahs can be emotive as long as they are factually correct and evidence based.

  • You can and should arrange events, inviting knowledgeable speakers to engage with the local community and provide crucial knowledge on the issue. 

  • You can organise and take part in demonstrations. You can hand out leaflets. You can also present petitions.

  • You can and should allow for and facilitate charitable fundraising in the masjid for the humanitarian crisis in Palestine.

*Ensure that the steps highlighted in Section 2 are carried out prior to or alongside engaging in the above.

Can we make Qunoot dua for Palestine?

Yes. You can and should make dua for Palestine, its people and its cause. Dua is worship and the imam can include duas taken directly from the Quran - this is a protected act of faith and therefore worship.

Can we use examples and stories from the Quran and sunnah?

Yes. Stories from the Quran and sunnah can serve as timely and historic examples of relevant concepts such as victory against oppression.

What if we are criticised online for the content of our khutbahs?

Should parts of your khutbah be isolated, extracted and misused online to portray a false representation of your message:

  1. The trustees of the masjid should set out to obtain a full understanding of the facts i.e. what has been said and by whom.
  2. Compile a statement setting out the meaning of the khutbah and its message in context (with the correct and accurate translations where necessary). This should also include a review of the khutba as a whole and to see if any further context or guidance can be provided.
  3. Consult solicitors regarding next steps in challenging the post/s.

You should also seek legal advice regarding the potential for a defamation claim against the individual/s attempting to tarnish the reputation of the masjid or its members.

This should not make you wary or afraid of continuing to speak on the issue of Palestine. You should and must amplify their voices, empowering the community to do so too.

What if we are accused of a hate crime?

It is important to understand the boundaries of the law. It is unlawful to glorify or support a Proscribed organisation under Terrorism laws.

A hate crime is constituted if there is communication which is threatening or abusive, and is intending to harass, alarm, or cause distress to someone on account of that person's colour, race, sex, disability, nationality (including citizenship), ethnic or national origin, religion, gender reassignment, or sexual orientation.

You should establish a process to include checks as to whether content can be considered hate speech. You do not have to vet a speech before it is made. You can, for example, include a training manual for any speakers and the subsequent training of those speakers by a legal professional.

Speakers can obtain regular CPD to cover any changes in the law. Keep in mind the purpose stated in your governing document and whether this needs to be amended or widened.

What if the masjid/charity is contacted by the Charity Commission?

The Charity Commission regulates the running of charities to ensure that they run in accordance with their legal and operational/management requirements.

Should the CC have any queries about the running or activities of the masjid or a member of its trustee board, it may write to the trustees in order to obtain clarity and initiate dialogue.

Don’t panic. Communication from the CC does not necessarily mean that there is any wrongdoing on the part of the masjid/charity. The CC may simply want to alert you to concerns it has been made aware of.

The CC can receive complaints from members of the public, government bodies and agencies or MPs. Where complaints are received regarding the activities of the charity, these will usually fall under the following categories:

  • The charity not doing what it claims to do;
  • Harming people;
  • Being involved in illegal activity;
  • Being used for personal profit or gain or; 
  • Losing money

The main aim of the CC should be to work with the masjid/charity to help resolve any issues.

Should you be contacted by the Charity Commission, you should:

  1. Engage with the Charity Commission to better understand the purpose behind its communication/questions/queries.
  2. Seek legal advice on how to engage with the CC. You should ensure that you take informed decisions and understand your rights before acting.
  3. Question the CC as to why it felt the matter of Palestine solidarity warranted contact with the masjid/charity and call out any Islamophobic undertones or tropes. A good place to understand the current Islamophobic tropes is from the All Party Parliamentary definition of Islamophobia made in 2018.


What practical steps can we take to ensure we are complying with our obligations?

The obligation of the trustees is to ensure that the masjid, as a charity, is run in accordance with its legal requirements, its aims and purposes and its operational and management rules. Knowing the objectives of the charity is an important starting point.

1. Keep things in writing

Ensure that your meetings are minuted and reflect any decisions taken by the board, the reasoning behind these decisions and any conflicts of interest etc. Document your processes and decision-making and ratify any agreed actions.

Trustees should document their agreed objectives when carrying out any of the above activities.  They should document how this will further the charity’s purpose. The Charity Commission’s main concern is to ensure that charities are carrying out these activities in line with their purpose as stated in their governing document.  In addition, you must also:

2. Stick to your articles/ governing document

Ensure you are clear on the purpose of your charity as reflected in the governing document and that you factor this into your decision-making at all times. Your charity’s conduct should reflect its stated aims and objectives.

3. Undertake risk assessments

Conduct risk-assessments to ensure that you are identifying any potential reputational damage, legal risks or the risk of veering from your articles. Ensure separate safeguarding risk assessments are undertaken in relation to vulnerable adults or children who will no doubt be attending the masjid.

When risks are identified, ensure systems are put in place to mitigate those risks, and carry out a risk/benefit analysis documenting that the benefits outweigh risks.

4. Get advice

Where you are unsure, seek advice from professional advisors and legal representatives. This will provide you with greater clarity on what you can and cannot do.

5. Engage

Engage confidently with the CC, should they wish to seek clarification on any of your activities. Use your documented decision-making to evidence the thorough processes in place.

6. Monitor internal compliance

With all activities, document compliance with your six main duties: being

  • Your charity is carrying out its purposes for the public benefit
  • Comply with your charity’s governing document and the law, including counter-terrorism laws
  • Act in your charity’s best interests
  • Manage your charity’s resources responsibly
  • Act with reasonable care and skill
  • Ensure your charity is accountable

7. Set up internal policies on:

  • Safeguarding - this should include taking in to account young children who may attend any khutbahs or classes
  • Social media and Communications 
  • Fundraising - this should document a vetting process for where any funds are donated and working with reputable partners that will deliver humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people

Note that this should not mean that masjids/charities should simply capitulate to pressure, either from the public or from the CC. It is important that masjids/charities can demonstrate their due diligence but should also push back where necessary.

If you/your charity have been contacted by the CC or if you require any further assistance in regard to any of the above, please contact our helpline on: 0300 030 2243 or email

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Know Your Rights: Guidance For Masajid & Charities About Palestine Solidarity
Know Your Rights
Know Your Rights: Guidance For Masajid & Charities About Palestine Solidarity
Know Your Rights