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Greenlit: Quitting the English Defence League: When Tommy Met Mo, BBC1

Quitting The English Defence League: When Tommy Met Mo (1 x 60′) – On Tuesday 8 October 2013, Tommy Robinson, co-founder of the English Defence League (EDL) announced that he was leaving the organisation and would join the counter-extremism think tank Quilliam. This unexpected move and what led Tommy to make this decision has been captured on film after filmmakers spent 18 months filming him, alongside social commentator and the man who tried to get the EDL banned, Mohammed Ansar.

In April 2012, Tommy and Mo appeared on BBC One’s The Big Questions, to debate right wing extremism. Mo surprised viewers when he invited Tommy and his family to dinner – a friendly gesture which became a catalyst for change.

This film reveals what happened behind the scenes of one of the most astounding and unexpected news stories of the year – the exit of Tommy from the EDL. The documentary uncovers how Robinson came to his decision to leave the organisation he founded; the moment he first met Maajid Nawaz, the co-founder and chairman of Quilliam who helped facilitate his stepping down, and questions whether this is the end of the EDL, a change of tactics or the beginning of a new Tommy Robinson.

Following the pair as each shows the other how they view British Islam, the film reveals that Ansar was present at an EDL street protest in May and was also the first Muslim to address the EDL. It shows Robinson as he visits Walsall’s Aisha Mosque and meets with one of Britain’s leading Muslim scholars, Shaykh Ibrahim Mogra. The former leader of the EDL also discusses the Qur’an with noted Islamic commentators including Islamic Scholar and scientist Usama Hasan and historian Tom Holland.

Channel: BBC1

Producer: Mentorn Scotland

TX: 28th October 2013

Source: BBC press release

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