Sunday, April 18News For London

UK: Increase in Islamophobia

 The rise in Islamophobic hate crimes has been compared to the 1930’s antisemitism. 

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Photo source: Aylin Kaya

 

A recent survey published by the Metropolitan Police reveals an increase in racial, religious and Islamophobic hate crimes in London.

Figures show that Islamophobic crimes have increased by 41.8% in a year. According to Islamic societies factors that stimulated such hate crimes are the Syrian refugee crisis, UK airstrikes and Paris bombings, which took place 13th November 2015.

 

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Organisations such as Stand Up To Racism, tell MAMA (measuring anti-Muslim attacks) and The Refugee Welcome Board have stressed their concerns on the hate crime, which is spreading across the country.

Zabi Dalu, Stand Up To Racism representative commented on the rise in relations with the refugee crisis.

“It’s extremely worrying, because just as we saw antisemitism rise with various wars in 1930’s and 40’s, we’re actually seeing the similar sort of racism and Islamophobia being whipped up against muslim communities, that’s what’s happening today. And we’re very concerned about the impact this has on Muslim communities in Britain.”

Islamic communities across the UK are fearful in the rapid increase on hate crimes. Dalu said that anyone visibly Muslim through their attire, which is more likely to be a woman, is actually disproportionately and violently attacked on the street.

Betul Kilinc, a female muslim who wears the Hijab shared her recent experience;

“One morning, I was driving my brother to school, we stopped at the traffic lights and a man from 3 meters away, put both his hands up pretending to hold a gun, he took imaginary gunshots at us. A second or two later he turned back making his way towards our car, but thankfully the traffic light turned green and we drove off. Due to such events that have happened recently following the Syria crisis I do not feel safe to leave the house.”

Razan Alakraa, who is the London representative of The Refugee Welcome Board spoke of ways in resolving the issue;

“The public only read the front page of a specific newspaper and judge. The media is such a strong tool in either direction. Educating people and having them talk to us will be a way of making them understand who we are as there are so many misconceptions.”

The Metropolitan police have been taking the crimes seriously and have warned victims to report on such issues.