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3rd April 2018 – the day British Muslims refused to bow down to flagrant Islamophobia

3rd April 2018 – the day British Muslims refused to bow down to flagrant Islamophobia

Categories: Latest News

Tuesday April 03 2018

In response to the horrific letter calling for hate crimes to be committed against Muslims – MEND advises all British Muslims, as well as all British citizens, to not allow the letter to foster an atmosphere of fear and to not be afraid in continuing with daily activities.

The previous month witnessed a number of people receiving abhorrent letters that called for horrific hate crimes to be committed against British Muslims and were called a “blatant incitement to terrorism”.

The suggested hate crimes ranged from ripping hijabs off Muslim women to torturing Muslims to bombing a mosque.

Lives must not be determined by Islamophobia. The role of students, professionals, parents, brothers and sisters must not be compromised by Islamophobia. The self-identity of British Muslims must not be lost, by the shaving of beards or the removing of hijabs, in fear of Islamophobia.

Islamophobia has already led to the marginalisation of British Muslims from civic, social and political life, however, it must not be allowed to result in self-censorship, self-discrimination, and self-marginalisation.

Therefore, MEND unequivocally advises all British Muslims, and everyone else, to continue their daily activities as per normal, as distressing as the letter is.

MEND calls on Imams and community leaders to advise congregations and the community not to be scared by this act and to go about their lives as usual.

However, MEND warns British Muslims to be vigilant.

If possible: to travel with someone, to avoid remote areas even if it means taking a longer route, to have your phone charged for emergencies and to keep an eye on your surroundings including people.

It is important that anyone who believes they are in immediate danger from a prejudice-based hate crime should contact the police as soon as possible on 999. If not in immediate danger, or if you have suffered a prejudice-based hate crime in the past, then you can report it using the non-emergency number 101.

You can also – in addition to the police – report any Islamophobic hate crime to MEND’s Islamophobia Response Unit (IRU) here. This allows us to monitor levels of abuse and compile accurate data on the levels of Islamophobia.

The IRU can also help you contact and deal with the police (if you choose to do so), and signpost you towards free legal advice and emotional support that may be available.

In response, MEND and a number of other organisations are hosting counter-events under the umbrella of “Love a Muslim Day”. MEND will be hosting five events across the country, including Bradford, Wakefield, Sheffield, Leeds and Cardiff.

The events aim to: bring people together, celebrate the diversity of Muslims, reassure individuals who have concerns about the letters and learn how communities and individuals can become more proactive in tackling hate crime.

Muslim Women’s Association of Edinburgh and Stand Up To Racism also intend to host similar events in Edinburgh and Newcastle, respectively.


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