News

Anti-Islam group banned after 'threats of violence'

THE leader of the Stop Mosque Gladstone group has come out swinging, labelling the council's acting chief executive officer Mark Holmes a "disgrace to our country".

The strong words came after Gladstone Regional Council knocked back a booking to hold a meeting at Calliope RSL Hall amid fears of violence.

ANTI-MOSQUE LEADER: Kim Vuga is leading the charge to stop Gladstone's mosque.
ANTI-MOSQUE LEADER: Kim Vuga is leading the charge to stop Gladstone's mosque. Declan Cooley

The Gladstone Region Safe Communities intended to hold a meeting at the venue Friday at 6pm so its followers could get a better understanding about objecting to the proposed Islamic Centre at Gladstone.

But in the interest of "public safety" the council said it had made the "difficult decision" to cancel the group's booking.

"The group itself has posted that disruptions, possibly of a violent nature, could be experienced at its meeting," acting mayor Chris Trevor said.

"The council has a duty of care to promote public safety and to ensure that public assets are not damaged and, on this occasion, did not wish to hire out a public venue for a meeting which had the potential to escalate into an incident the community would find abhorrent."

But in a message to its 270 Facebook followers, Gladstone Region Safe Communities claimed it had organised a "peaceful" information forum and that any threats of violence had come from "detractors".

MORE ON KIM VUGA | 

>>'Stop the Mosque' founder's son arrested on weapons charges

>>Plans lodged for Islamic Centre to be built near school

>>Secret 'stop the mosque' meeting in Gladstone last night

The group labelled the council's decision to cancel the booking a "political attack", unjust, discriminatory, shameful, "denying of freedoms" and a "terrible thing" for democracy.

"A number of our community contacts had reported to us on Tuesday that a group of local people had been making threats of violence and discussing plans to disrupt our peaceful forum," the post read.

"The council has responded to those threats by cancelling our booking without any error identified on our part."

But this isn't the first time groups against the proposed Islamic Centre have been denied a venue, with previous rallies organised by the leader of Stop the Mosque Gladstone, Kim Vuga, suffering a similar fate.

Ms Vuga suggested had the group changed its name to Hizb ut-Tahrir (a controversial Islamic organisation), the council would have approved its booking. Although Ms Vuga said the council's decision showed it had "picked a side", plans for the meeting would still go ahead out the front of the hall.

Cr Trevor said councillors did not want to be seen favouring any sides.

Topics:  gladstone gladstone region



The unique Gladstone region Anzac service people drive hours to see

The Turkey Beach Anzac Day march.

Support for Anzac Day brings tears to ceremony organiser's eyes.

'Pretty amazing': Boyne dawn service turnout surprises organisers

Boyne RSL sub-branch secretary Mike Robbins at the Stirling Park dawn service.

More than a thousand people wake early for Boyne's dawn service.

Second body found after tragic fishing accident

 A boat has been pulled out of the water at Baffle Creek. 
Photo: Tracy Olive

Search continues for missing woman lost in a boat

Local Partners

Madonna biopic in the works

MADONNA’S life as a rising pop star in New York in the early 1980s is set to be documented in a new biopic titled Blonde Ambition

Billionaire Elon Musk and Amber Heard hit Shingle Inn

Amber Heard and Elon Musk enjoy a bite to eat at the Shingle Inn, Broadbeach.

Actor Amber Heard and billionaire Elon Musk are enjoying Qld

New Netflix doco on JonBenet Ramsay's death makes huge claim

A new documentary will air claims that child beauty queen JonBenet Ramsay was murdered by a paedo sex ring.

New claims that JonBenet Ramsay was killed by a paedophile sex ring

Movie review: Guardians Of the Galaxy Vol. 2 delivers on all fronts

Star-Lord/Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) and Drax (Dave Bautista) in Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2.

Does Guardians Vol. 2 live up to high expectations set by original?

Sir Elton John hospitalised with rare infection

CROCODILE ROCKER: Sir Elton John will head to Mackay in September for the first stop of his Australian tour.

Elton John cancels shows after becoming violently ill.

Sunshine Coast singers out to turn chairs on The Voice

NEXT BIG THING? Tune in to see Glasshouse Mountains folk artist Benjamin James Caldwell on The Voice.

Do our Coast folk singers have what it takes to turn judges' chairs?

Former Glee star Lea Michele posts nude selfie to Instagram

Former Glee star Lea Michele has posted a very revealing snapshot

Lisa Curry and fiance sell up Sunshine Coast property

I'm a Celebrity, Get me Out of Here! contestant Lisa Curry with partner Mark Tabone after being evicted from the South African jungle. Picture: Dylan Robinson ***EMBARGOED 7:30pm March 9th***

Plans for dream home on hold at Mount Mellum place on market

Stunning Gladstone region homes for sale under $1 million

BARGAIN BUYS: Ocean views, 300sqm+ floor plans and in-ground pools are available in the Gladstone region for under $1 million due to the downturn.

You don't need to be a millionaire to be in the running.

SOLD: Iconic M'boro pub set to be transformed

Shane Muller from Maryborough Motorcycles will be opening up a showroom and café at the Shamrock Hotel.

The Shamrock Hotel is set to be transformed in the next two months.

BARGAIN BUY: $30K for 'rare' Gladstone region land

RARE CHANCE: There are blocks being auctioned off in Ubobo this weekend.

'Rare' vacant blocks in region selling for a bargain

A few home truths when purchasing

THINK AHEAD: Buying a property is likely to be one of the biggest financial commitments most people will make in their life.

Buying your first property can be exciting but also quite daunting.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!