Beirut (Lebanon), May 28(ANI): Islamist militant leader Omar Bakri Mohammed has urged British Muslims to snub England's bid for World Cup glory, saying that the tournament is evil as it "inflames nationalism".
Mohammed even condemned Muslims who support England as "deviant and hypocrites".
"Islam is against the World Cup because it inflames nationalism. That is why we get so much hooliganism with supporters of different countries fighting each other. I am sure there will be some Muslims supporting England, but they are deviant and hypocrites," The Daily Star quoted Bakri, as saying.
"We have nothing against playing football for fun, but when it involves matches between countries it provokes feelings of animosity. Algeria will not be representing Islam, so Muslims should not support them either," he added.
He was backed by British-born extremist Anjem Choudary, who has called on Muslims who fly the England flag on their cars to rip them down.
It is feared that Mohammed's comments could trigger unrest when England plays Algeria on June 18.
Meanwhile, Football Supporters' Federation (FSF) Chairman Malcolm Clarke blasted the comments.
"The main message of the World Cup is of hope and friendship and not politics. It's not about negativity and hatred," he added. (ANI)