I came across a couple of videos of Oldham politicians criticising Independent campaigners. 

Their argument is that campaigners shouldn’t bring religion into politics.

They also suggested that pro-Palestinian campaigners shouldn’t keep talking about Islam.

This mirrors politics in Bangladesh where the ruling Awami League party is secular as opposed to the opposition BNP party which is more pro-Islam.

It came as party Independent councillors were likened to 'extremists'. Suella Braverman also said that the “Islamists, the extremists and the anti-Semites are in charge now.”

Oldham made it onto national news after Independent candidates took 16 seats in the council and effectively deprived the Labour party of a majority in the council for the first time in 13 years.

Labour is left with just 26 councillors compared to 31 before the elections. The group lost seven seats to Independent candidates.

Should the Palestine cause not unite Muslims rather than splinter them into separate antagonistic factions?

I believe it should have. I believe it is wrong for Labour candidates and Labour supporters to continue supporting the party whose leader justified Israel 'depriving the Palestinian population of water, food and electricity'. Like the Conservatives, Labour has blood on its hands.

There are however grey areas where councillors justify continued support of the party by arguing that they want to influence policy from within. But in my opinion Keir Starmer’s statement was unacceptable and has been punished for it at the ballot box and will be again in the national elections.

For Muslims, Palestine isn’t a fringe issue. The Aqsa mosque compound is the third holiest site in Islam.

As fellow Muslims we feel the pain of our brothers and sisters in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem as our Prophet (PBUH) taught us that Muslims are part of one body so if one part hurts the other parts feel it too.

The fact that so many non-Muslims are protesting and are passionate about Palestine shows that the issue isn’t just a Muslim one but in fact it is a human issue.

Any sane, rational person will have to accept that what has been happening in Palestine is a genocide, a massacre and a crime against humanity.

What's worrying is the Government's attempt to muzzle genuine discourse around the issue of the ongoing genocide.

They are criminalising support for Palestine by trying to equate anti-Zionism with antisemitism. The reality is that the Arabs are also a semitic people so hostility towards Arabs is also antisemitism.

The case of George Galloway in Rochdale shows that UK Muslims can make a change through the ballot box just like they also did in Oldham.

This cause isn't just important to Muslims as I can point to the cases of non-Muslim Colombia who have severed ties with Israel and South Africa who took Israel to the ICJ. Also, student protests have gained momentum across America and the UK.

It is wrong also to suggest that Independents have an ulterior motive for separating from Labour but are in fact representing their majority Muslim constituents and unlike those who remain in the party cannot justify staying.