First World War legacy spreads message of peace in Hartlepool

From left: Farhan Ali, Dr Bilal Tahir, Mayor of Darlington Councillor Veronica Copeland, Father Graeme Buttery of St Oswald's Church, Barry Coppinger,  Councillor Allan Barclay, Mike Hill MP, Bilal Atkinson, Tahir Selby, Dr Irfan Malik, Syed Hashim Ahmad and Brigadier PJA Baker OBE.
From left: Farhan Ali, Dr Bilal Tahir, Mayor of Darlington Councillor Veronica Copeland, Father Graeme Buttery of St Oswald's Church, Barry Coppinger, Councillor Allan Barclay, Mike Hill MP, Bilal Atkinson, Tahir Selby, Dr Irfan Malik, Syed Hashim Ahmad and Brigadier PJA Baker OBE.

More than 100 people have attended an annual peace seminar held by Hartlepool’s Muslim community.

The lessons and legacy of the First World War provided the backdrop to spread messages of love and peace.

Tahir Selby Imam of Nasir Mosque speaking at the seminar.

Tahir Selby Imam of Nasir Mosque speaking at the seminar.

The seminar was the fourth to be held once a year by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community at Nasir Mosque, in Brougham Terrace.

Local church and spiritual leaders, politicians and residents from the local community all supported the event.

The seminar’s main talk and power point presentation was given by Dr Bilal Tahir, an Assistant Professor and Research Fellow at the University of Sheffield.

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Just over 100 people attended this year's Peace Seminar at Hartlepool's Nasir Mosque in Brougham Terrace.

Just over 100 people attended this year's Peace Seminar at Hartlepool's Nasir Mosque in Brougham Terrace.

He explained how Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, religious leader and the founder of the Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam, prophesied an impending global calamity in 1905 and how it came true with the war.

Tahir Selby, Imam of the Nasir Mosque said: “In this Peace Seminar we are commemorating the ending of the First World War, a war that was meant to end all wars.

“Of course war is the opposite to peace, but as it has been explained, the Promised Messiah gave a prophecy about this war and of course, we believe that if mankind turns to God, then there should be no war, only peace.”

Imam Selby said the feedback from guests was great and everyone said they learned something new about the war.

Some of the First World War artefacts on display at the event.

Some of the First World War artefacts on display at the event.

Speaker Dr Irfan Malik explained about the Muslim contribution to the war and took memorabilia of the First World War.

Other speakers included MP for Hartlepool Mike Hill, Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger, and the Mayor of Hartlepool Councillor Allan Barclay.

He was presented with a cheque for his chosen charities as was the Royal British Legion.

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Mr Hill said he was proud to attend adding: “It makes us proud as a nation that we have such good people in Britain.”

There was also a presentation about the Ahmadiyya Community’s work, both locally and international.

Mr Coppinger said: “It is always good to know this community is doing such a good work, not only in Hartlepool, but all over the UK.

“Your community is an asset for this country.”