Muslim TV crew stopped under terror law

A Muslim TV producer has accused the police of constantly targeting her crew and stopping them from filming in the streets of London. The crew from an international Muslim network, which included three hijab wearing members, were filming in Notting Hill, west London, in March when they said they were stopped and quizzed. Producer Anousheh Demartino, who was stopped on three previous occasions, told The Muslim News:

“They asked us for our ID and why we were filming. After we told them we were allowed to continue. 20 minutes later we were stopped again. This time we were asked for our residential address; they only asked me, the two other hijab wearing women and not [our] young cameraman. I protested at first and asked why they needed my home address when it was a professional not a personal matter, but he insisted and, not wanting to prolong the incident, I gave him the details.” Anousheh says she was given no legal reasons as to why they were stopped filming; however, she did say the officer made a reference to terrorist activity.

Speaking of her “frustrating” experience as a Muslim journalist she said, “I was stopped before with another crew and given report slips once on High Street Kensington in February and once on Victoria Road. We have to carry those slips with us all the time. I don’t know why we constantly get stopped, is it because we are not a large mainstream media [outlet], or is it because I wear the hijab?”

The incident came a month before a Muslim BBC journalist was held to the ground by police officers after his radio equipment was mistaken for an explosive device.

Muslim News, 30 May 2008