The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) has today written to major British leaders to stand in solidarity with Muslim communities following a week where there have been a number of public attacks targeting Muslims.
Writing to the leaders of all national political parties, the letter highlights three incidents from last week:
In London, a knife-wielding man shouted “I want to kill a Muslim” before stabbing a Muslim in the head, twice in the chest and three times in the back
In London, a Muslim woman wearing a headscarf was shoved to the ground and dragged along the pavement in a “sickening” attack: she was left unassisted for almost 20 minutes before being able to dial 999
In Scotland, a mosque in Cumbernauld was sprayed with racist graffiti.The letter signed by Harun Khan, the Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, said: “Standing up against the spread of hate is not a party-political issue and we are writing to political leaders from all parties requesting they all stand in solidarity with Muslim communities to tackle this scourge of Islamophobia that divides our society.”It concluded: “Whilst the scale of Islamophobia in the UK has not yet reached that faced within many parts of Europe, we cannot be complacent and hope we can count on your support in retaining the values of our nation that we hold dear.”
The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK’s largest Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.
It also covered concerns about the media: “We also hope that newspapers will act responsibly and stop spreading hate with headlines like “Here’s what terrorists look like” and instead report on the fantastic work done by Muslim communities across the country. In recent weeks, many newspapers have been forced to correct a number of articles after being found to be making false claims about Muslims.”
Growing hate crime against Muslims as recorded by national police forces (despite significant under-reporting) goes hand-in-hand with hostility towards Muslims. It was exemplified on a train this week when a man refused to sit next to the winner of last year’s Great British Bake Off, Nadiya Hussain, saying “I ain’t sitting near a Muslim”.
In the month following the election, extremists on Twitter exalted in the election of President-elect Donald Trump by circulating a number of memes and images, many of which targeted Muslims, in an attack on political correctness that mirrored a terrifying emergence of hate incidents.
Paramedics take injured victim to hospital after assault in Chingford
A man repeatedly attacked a Muslim woman at a Midtown Dunkin’ Donuts on Sunday, reportedly calling her a “terrorist” and throwing hot coffee in her face. The attack happened just before 2:45 p.m. at a Dunkin’ location on West 35th Street near Seventh Avenue, police said.
Mason Gray, 34, ordered coffee then allegedly approached a group of Muslim women sitting at a table, the News reports. “I gave him coffee and he said something to me about terrorists, but I couldn’t hear what he was saying. He walked away from me and sat next to a group of Muslim women,” an unnamed store employee told the tabloid, stating that at first, the women ignored Gray, and continued eating.
According to a police spokesperson, Gray then shouted “I hate Muslims, I’m a cop, and I’m going to kill you” and threw his cup of hot coffee at a 21-year-old woman. The Dunkin’ Donuts employee says Gray also swung his bag and hit the woman in her face.
Gray then pursued the woman as she ran outside of the coffee shop, put her in a headlock, and said he was going to kill her, police said. Officers responded after 911 was called, and arrested Gray on charges of felony hate crime assault. The 21-year-old victim refused medical attention at the scene.
A Muslim man has been brutally stabbed in an apparent hate attack near a mosque in the US state of California, police say.
Muslim place of worship in Scotland vandalized after attacks on individuals in London
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“Islamophobia has become so mainstream in this country that Americans have been trained to expect violence against Muslims – not excuse it, but expect it. You have an Islamophobia industry in this country devoted to making Americans think there is an enemy within.” – Reza Aslan
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