Greg Clark addresses issues of community cohesion since the EU referendum, while visiting Dar Al Islam Mosque in London

Greg Clarke


Addressing issues of community cohesion since last Thursday’s (23 June 2016) EU referendum while visiting Dar Al Islam Mosque in London for the Big Iftar, Communities Secretary Greg Clark, said:

By opening the doors of your mosque, by inviting friends to share food, you are celebrating values that transcend any one religion, values that are important to all British citizens. These values are the ties that bind us together.

I’m proud that this is a country where we don’t simply tolerate one another’s beliefs, but where we actively celebrate the diversity among us.

I’m proud that this is a country where people are free to observe – to celebrate – their religion and culture.

And I’m most proud of all that this is a country where we draw pleasure, and strength, from those differences.

Those values – religious freedom, respect for others, pleasure and strength from diversity – are more important now than ever.

After the referendum, with its close result, we must redouble our efforts to come together as One Nation.

Hateful thoughts can too easily morph into wicked acts. Since Thursday’s result we have seen increasing incidences of xenophobia and racism.

We have to stand up – we have to stand together – against anyone who would attempt to hijack an exercise in democracy and turn it into something ugly, something pitiful, something racist.

Wherever hate crime occurs, it must be stamped out, fast.

Together, if we stand shoulder to shoulder, and report every incidence of hate crime, we can drive it from our streets.

Both democracy, and the right to religious freedom, depend on free speech – and in turn, free speech depends on the ability to express one’s opinion free from violence and the threat of violence.

While I believe in tolerance, it is time to be less tolerant of harassment and intimidation.

Standing up for diversity, facing down discrimination and bigotry – these are my values; they’re your values; they’re British values.


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Categories: Community Cohesion, Dar Al Islam mosque, DCLG Minister, Greg Clarke, Hate Crimes, mosque, News

Some Muslim Women Are Taking Off Their Hijabs



Over the last two years, we have seen a new and depressing phenomenon; that of some Muslim women taking off their Hijabs and wearing hats or taking them off altogether.

In a society that values the freedom to believe or not believe and to wear what you want, this change in behaviour has been accelerated in the last few months. More and more Muslim women are telling us that this change is primarily due to feelings of insecurity and from repeated comments, statements and assaults against them. Women from a minority group who suffer numerous social, economic and equality challenges are now self-selecting to hide their identity from fellow citizens.

The impacts on these women are significant. These changes have led to greater feelings of anger towards the wider community as they feel that they have had to change a core element of their identity just to live free from fear and constant anxiety. In other Muslim women, it has made them feel more aggressive towards non-Muslims whist others have questioned their future in the United Kingdom. A smaller number see the change as a temporary measure and a form of pragmatism, meaning that Muslim women are again being impacted upon through feelings of isolationalism, exclusion, anger, sadness and depression.

More work is needed in this area and we will be collating more data and information on this in the coming months.


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Categories: anti-Muslim hate, Hijabs, Muslim women, News

Conservative MP, Michelle Donelan Stands up Against Racism & Hatred

Michelle Donellan MP


Following a racially motivated verbal attack on a former member of her staff, Michelle Donelan today [29/06/16] questioned the Prime Minister about what more the Government can do to stamp out racial hatred from our society.

Miss Donelan’s former member of staff, who is of Pakistani origin was abused whilst shopping in London on 28th June 2016.

A woman shouted obscenities at him and chased him down the road screaming that people ‘like him’ were not welcome in the UK, that ‘we voted out’ and that people ‘like him’ shot people and blow themselves up.

Outraged MPs shouted ‘shame’ as Miss Donelan recounted the experience to the Prime Minister and asked David Cameron to do everything in his power to eradicate what she described as ‘evil hatred’.

Turning to last week’s EU Referendum result, Miss Donelan said that we can not allow the referendum decision to breed racism and now actually have an opportunity for the country to be even more international in its outlook, not just European.

In response, Prime Minister David Cameron said:

“We have many imperfections but this country does have a claim to be one of the most successful multi-race, multi-faith, multi-ethnic democracies anywhere on earth and we should do everything we can to safeguard that…We want action by the police, by the prosecuting authorities, the laws are there for these people to be prosecuted and they should be used…We should absolutely not put up with this in our country.”

Earlier in Prime Minister’s Questions, in response to beleaguered Labour leader Jeremy Corby, David Cameron said that hate crimes “are appalling and they need to stop” – saying all politicians must “utterly condemn them”. He announces a new action on tackling hate crime to strengthen the government’s response.

Michelle Donelan said:

“Taimur is a fantastic person and no one deserves to be treated how he was. We cannot let hatred and abuse permeate our society or be deemed acceptable in anyway.  We must do everything in our power to crush discrimination of any kind.

We have to make the best of Brexit and I think that one of the great opportunities is to become more international in our outlook and approach.”


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Categories: Brexit, David Cameron, EU referendum, Hate Crimes, Michelle Donelan, News

Christian Group, ‘Voice for Justice UK’ Targets Muslim Head of BBC Religion and Ethics

Aaqil Ahmed


Christian group, ‘Voice for Justice UK’, has raised a petition with 12,000 signatures to remove the ‘biased’ Head of religious programming, Aaqil Ahmed.

In a bizarre move, Christian group ‘Voice for Justice UK’ has urged the BBC not to reduce Christian programming on the assumption that Aaqil Ahmed, who happens to be Muslim, may be looking to do so.  It also asked that Mr Ahmed be removed from his post citing that:

“that there is an unacceptable bias in favour of Islam and against Christianity” when it comes to BBC religious programming.”

Actual hard evidence in the petition regarding the ‘bias’ was not forthcoming, but there was plenty of rhetoric. Revd Lynda Rose, CEO of Voice for Justice UK, told Premier Radio:

“The UK is actually a Christian country, it’s established as such by statue, all our laws, our traditions, our culture is founded on Christian values, so it would seem entirely right that Christianity be given priority air time

“Even when it comes to general programming, Christians are being misrepresented or treated unfairly, they’re either portrayed as barmy, or they’re very much portrayed as endorsing modern, secular views.”

Revd Lynda Rose added:

“It’s scandalous that someone displaying such clear pro-Islamic bias and contempt for Christianity should be the BBC’s Head of Religion and Ethics.”

Programming on Christianity

Aaqil Ahmed has commissioned a range of Christian based documentaries, historical factual programmes and diverse Christian religious programming showing the diversity in Christian theology. He has also commissioned projects critical of Islamist narratives and thinking but this seems to have gone by the wayside with ‘Voice for Justice UK’. This is the same Aaqil Ahmed that said that it is wrong to suggest that ISIS has nothing to do with Islam. Hardly a secret Islamist who is promoting a Muslim focussed agenda.

However, we think that the best response to these barmy charges came from the BBC itself. A BBC Spokesperson said:

“We are actually intending to do more programming around Christianity and more on other faiths as well, so there is absolutely no question of an ‘either or’ on our output.

BBC Head of Religion and Ethics, Aaqil Ahmed is not biased against Christianity programming, nor does he show any pro-islamic bias and any suggestions that he does are ludicrous and unfounded.”


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Categories: Aaqil Ahmed, BBC, Christian, Ethics, Muslim, News, Opinions, Religion, Voice for Justice UK

Sacramento stabbing victim says ‘Nazis’ responsible



Multiple people were stabbed during a rally on Sunday (June 26) at the state capitol in Sacramento, California, the local fire department said on Twitter.

Five people were transported to area hospitals after the “mass casualty incident”, some with critical trauma stab wounds, the fire department said.

No arrests were immediately made, a fire official said.

The Sacramento Police Department said on Twitter that it had closed some areas to traffic during a protest at the capital and in a second message said that it had a public information officer on the scene at the capitol.

Local TV station KCRA reported that violence erupted between a white supremacist group and counter protesters during a scheduled morning rally on the west steps of the State Capitol.

The Los Angeles Times newspaper reported that a neo-Nazi group had planned a rally at the site, and that there were protests planned against the group.

The melee comes about four months after four people were stabbed during a scuffle between members of the Ku Klux Klan and counter-protesters near a planned KKK rally in Anaheim, California.


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Categories: Far Right groups, KKK, Nazis, News, Sacramento, US

We Don’t Need the Congratulations of Far Right Groups like Marine Le Pen’s

Marine Le Pen of France's National Front (FN) addressesa a news conference in Vienna, Austria, June 17, 2016. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader


The decision of the EU referendum was made by people for a variety of reasons and on a razor-thin majority. However, that has not stopped groups like the Front National jumping on the decision to promote and legitimise their rhetoric.

Marine Le Pen has a number of associations that should raise eyebrows and she has been praised by other xenophobic groups in Europe. Having congratulated the British people on Brexit, she stated the following:

“Obviously I would like firstly to offer my warmest congratulations and most friendly to the British people and to the leaders of the campaign for Brexit that enabled this historic result: my friend and ally in the European Parliament Janice Atkinson, Mr. Johnson, the very brave former mayor of London, the boss of UKIP Nigel Farage, and all those, known and unknown, from across the political kind, who have invested in this campaign.”

The last thing that the British people need is congratulations from a national party that has roots in anti-Semitism and which poses Islam as a threat to Europe. The British people do not need such external groups from interfering or attempting to gain favour through such statements, particularly given the background of the Front National.

There will also be other parties in Europe who try and develop alliances with groups in the United Kingdom post the Brexit vote. This means that we have to remain vigilant and do everything possible to highlight and keep such groups away from trying to influence, gain a foothold or develop any association within our country. What we need now, are groups that can heal divisions, who can provide hope and tackle hatred and intolerance. Marine Le Pen’s Front National is part of the problem and certainly has no solutions for our country. British people alone have the solutions and we must do all to reject her overtures and highlight the anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim base of the organisation.


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Categories: Brexit, EU, European Union, France, Front National, Marine Le Pen, News, Opinions, United Kingdom

Support within Europe for far right extremism has echoes of a turbulent past

Britain First marching edited


By Nafeez Ahmed, on behalf of Tell MAMA

More than half a century after the Second World War, the West is sliding toward a resurgence of far-right political movements.

A new report[i] funded by the German Federal Foreign Office reveals that public support for far-right political parties in Europe has risen exponentially since 1999, resulting in record wins in the European Parliament, as well as levels of influence on national governments unprecedented in the post-war era.

An analysis of the report’s data suggests that far-right parties are poised to take a third of all seats in the next round of European elections in 2019.

The German report coincides with a wide range of new scholarship exploring the similarities between anti-Muslim hatred today, and vitriolic anti-Semitism in the early 20th century. These new scientific studies by leading experts paint an alarming picture of the rise of xenophobia across the world’s most powerful liberal democracies, with parallels to the toxic climate of the 1930s.

1.1 Far-right tipping point in Europe?

As anti-Muslim sentiment has been mainstreamed in the United States through the xenophobic rhetoric of the leading Republican presidential candidates, far-right parties across the European Union are making dramatic electoral gains.

In Austria, the far-right Freedom Party (FPO) sent shockwaves throughout the country with its extraordinary success in the presidential elections, a hair’s breadth away from total victory. In March, the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) party made startling gains in regional elections in three states. The AfD is now Germany’s third most popular[ii] political party according to an opinion poll[iii] conducted in November 2015 by INSA.

This is being mirrored elsewhere, with far-right parties building popular support in Slovakia (People’s Party), Hungary (Jobbik), Greece (Golden Dawn) and France (National Front).

But the new report sponsored by the German Foreign Office shows that these gains are part of an alarming pattern of increasing popular support that is likely to escalate. The report by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, released in February 2016, warned that “far-right parties and movements are on the offensive in many countries worldwide in the wake of the global financial crisis.”

The European elections two years ago, the report concludes, were “the most successful to date for the far-right parties in the EU.” Far right parties have “secured 172 seats in the European Parliament. That corresponds to just under 23 percent of the seats.”

The new report, is authored by Thilo Janssen, a research fellow in the European Parliament. His review of European election data since 1999 reveals that the rate of increase of seats for far-right parties has doubled in each election.

1.2 Exponential growth

Looking closely at the rate of increase, it is clear that this is an exponential trend. In 1999, far-right seats took 11 per cent of the European Parliament. This rose by 1.5 per cent to 12.5 per cent of seats after the 2004 election. In the 2009 election, the number of far-right seats increased by 3 per cent—double the previous rate of increase—to 15 per cent.

Then in the 2014 election, the number of far-right seats rocketed up to 22.9 per cent—an increase of 6.9 per cent, which is more than double the preceding rate of increase.

Janssen PictureFigure 1 Source – Janssen (2016)

If this exponential rate of increase continues, far-right parties could win 37 per cent of seats in the European Parliament in the next election. This happens to be the same percentage of German votes that Adolf Hitler’s National Socialist party won in July 1932, precipitating the rise of the Nazi regime.

That parity should not be assumed to imply that today’s European far-right will at this point automatically acquire the access necessary to cement control of the levers of power in the European Parliament. Even at the point of his party’s entry into government, Hitler still required concessions from the left among other forms of collaboration to assure his rise to power. However, the parallel should be taken seriously as a signal that if current trends continue, the European far-right could be in a formidable position by 2019. If these far-right parties are able to organise coherently as a single voting bloc in the European Parliament from this position with dramatically greater access to EU funding, this could provide a foundation for further consolidation and expansion, both internationally and among their own domestic constituencies.

“Right-wing populist parties in the EU are persistently on the rise, which in some Member States has taken them to the brink of obtaining a majority in parliamentary elections,” observes Janssen in his report, who also points out that their numerical strength in the EU Parliament is “chiefly due to successes in the economically strong Member States in the north and west of the EU”—namely, the UK, France, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Finland and Belgium.

Despite major differences, these parties share a focus on populist resentments against immigrants, often grouped together as “Muslims”; and unwavering hostility toward the supranational EU, perceived as “the embodiment” of capitulation to the existential threat of Islam.

In November 2015, Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn—who chairs the EU’s General Affairs Council in Brussels—warned that the nationalist policy agendas of anti-immigrant far-right parties could catalyse an EU break-up “within months.”

“This false nationalism can lead to a real war,” he told the Germany press agency, DPA.

1.3 Islamophobia as cover for far-right ideology

Although these groups portray Muslims as ‘the enemy’, and some advocate support for Israel, new research confirms that this is a tactical shift to provide cover for their far-right origins and sympathies.

A peer-reviewed study published in early April in the Routledge journal Israel Affairs finds that anti-Muslim hatred is increasingly being used by far-right extremists as a proxy for longstanding racist and anti-Semitic ideologies.[iv]

The paper, authored by Professor Amikam Nachmani—chair of the Department of Political Science at Bar-Ilan University—highlights semantic parallels in the way Jews and Muslims have been targeted by historic and contemporary fascists:

“Like today’s Muslim immigrants who are described as preferring ghettoization and parallel societies, Jews were said to emphasise their separate existence, exclusiveness and rejection of universalism since Biblical times… Nazi-style rhetoric employed against the Jews is now targeted against Muslims.”

Whereas the Nazis cited the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and Hitler’s Mein Kampf to ‘prove’ that all Jews are agents of an international conspiracy to control the world, today selective cherry-picking of Islamic texts is used to claim that Islam commands “every Muslim to fight an uncompromising holy war against non-Muslims.”

Muslims in the West are “perceived as the spearhead of the campaign to Islamise Europe,” explains Nachmani, while Muslim population growth is presented as a covert strategy to conquer Europe:

“Since the mass migration of the presently 30-40 million unemployed or refugee Arabs will be heading to Western Europe, Armageddon will be fought out on European soil.”

Professor Nachmani’s most alarming argument is that many of the most popular far-right groups are using the banner of Israel to conceal their neo-Nazi sympathies, and garner political legitimacy:

“Right-wing Europeans, among them Holocaust deniers and ardent anti-Semites, frequently decry Arab and Muslim migrants… But these very circles also consider it ‘natural’ to show sympathy for Israel, perceived by them as a staunch enemy of the Arab nation and Muslims…

European right-wingers, nationalists and fascists are presently engaging in a freakish turn: they aim to gain legitimacy by courting Israel. They hope to brush aside their hatred of Jews and the anti-Semitic past of their countries, thanks to the support they grant to the Israeli cause in the Arab-Israeli/Palestinian-Israeli conflict…”

Yet Nachmani writes that the same far-right groups have backed “proposals to limit Jewish religious freedoms.” He highlights their “proposed bans on circumcision, ritual slaughtering and distinctive religious attire” aimed primarily at Muslims:

“Jewish law, however, prescribes similar practices. The result is that anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment amounts to anti-Semitism or, more accurately, anti-Judaism.”

1.4 From anti-Semitism to anti-Muslim hatred

The tactical shift in xenophobic discourse is possible because there are important structural parallels between the targeting of Jews and the demonisation of Muslims.

A new peer-reviewed paper published in The Anthology of Migration and Social Transformation finds that “the structure and function of anti-Muslim racism and anti-Semitism are actually similar in terms of the ways in which they operate especially in times of social-economic and political turmoil.”[v]

The anthology, published by science publisher Springer, is part of IMISCOE (International Migration, Integration and Social Cohesion), the largest academic network on migration in the world. Study author Professor Ayhan Kaya of the European University Institute in Florence is currently funded by the European Commission to research identity, pluralism and tolerance in the EU.

Professor Kaya’s paper argues that although anti-Muslim racism and anti-Semitism cannot be lumped together due to fundamental historical differences, there are important commonalities: “Both anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim racism focus on belief in religious law to render Jews and Muslims as threats to the nation.”

While anti-Semitism encompasses views that racialise Jews “as an assimilated threat to national interests emerging at moments of crisis”, this is now happening to Muslims:

“Muslims are now being represented as a different kind of folk devil, a social group that is openly and aggressively trying to impose its religion on national culture… Muslims have become global ‘scapegoats’, blamed for all negative social phenomena such as illegality, crime, violence, drug abuse, radicalism, fundamentalism, conflict and financial burdens… There is a growing fear in the United States, Europe and even in Russia and the post-Soviet countries that Muslims will demographically take over sooner or later.”

According to Kaya, public opinion poll data demonstrates sharp increases in negative attitudes toward Muslim minorities across the West, in some cases reaching close to 50 per cent of each national population. This has manifested in “increasing numbers of attacks and instances of discrimination against Muslims, as well as rallies and gatherings touting anti-Muslim messages.”

1.5 Anti-Muslim and anti-Jewish hatred: Possibly two sides of the same racism?

Kaya’s findings are corroborated[vi] by a 2015 Pew Global Attitudes poll of European public opinion, which found that negative opinions toward Muslims was more than twice the rate of negative opinions towards Jews.

The percentage of Europeans who viewed Jews unfavourably was just 13 per cent, compared to 33 per cent who viewed Muslims unfavourably—a third of the Europeans surveyed. The poll also showed that half or more of the public in six of the European countries surveyed believed that the emergence of far-right ‘Eurosceptic’ parties is a good thing.

These complexities are reflected in recent hate crime data. In London[vii], a total of 483 incidents against Jewish people and properties was recorded for the year 2014 to 2015, an increase of 61 per cent from the preceding year. In the same period, 818 Islamophobic hate crimes were recorded, nearly double the number of anti-Semitic attacks, and an increase of 63.9 per cent from the previous year.

In France[viii], anti-Semitic attacks continued to outnumber anti-Muslim hate crimes. Although anti-Semitic incidents dropped by 5 per cent in 2015, their total number was 806. While attacks against Muslim people and properties tripled in volume, their total number was 400—half the number of attacks committed against Jews.

In testimony earlier this month before an OSCE session on hate crimes, Susan Corke—Director of Anti-Semitism and Extremism for Human Rights First—said that the prevalence of anti-Semitism in France was occurring “within the context of broader and interrelated phenomena including the ascendancy of the far-right National Front party, mounting anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment, the spread of Islamist extremism, and the increasing alienation of many Muslims in France.”

In other words, anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim hatred, despite varying degrees, remain closely interrelated and are both at record levels.

1.6 Europe’s perpetual Jewish-Muslim problem

The waxing and waning of anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim hatred is no coincidence, but part of their complex interrelationship in the context of the tortured evolution of European nationalism.

A paper released late last year by Professor Ethan B. Katz, a historian at the University of Cincinnati, in the Wiley journal Cross Currents, illustrates how both forms of xenophobia emerged directly from Europe’s colonial-era civilising missions.[ix]

Colonialism, writes Professor Katz, “shaped, utilised, and manifested itself in anti-Semitism and Islamophobia from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century.”

During the mid-to-late nineteenth century, Katz says, “Islamophobia became much more pronounced in the colonial venture than anti-Semitism. Although Jews’ position was never entirely secure, in certain instances they even benefited from colonial rule.”

After the First World War, however, at the height of the colonial venture, anti-Muslim hatred was rapidly overtaken by anti-Semitism across Europe:

“Both Jews and Muslims were frequently depicted with highly racialised imagery and in many instances faced significant legal and social discrimination. At the same time, Muslims in particular were often the target of propaganda campaigns meant to win their loyalty for one European power or another, as well as provocations meant to turn them against Jews.”

During the Second World War, Europe’s increasingly violent anti-Semitism “crystallised in the horrors of the Holocaust.” Europe’s colonial powers and other political forces “saw in Muslims a possible constituency for their wartime aims,” elevating their position considerably.

In ensuing decades, Katz argues, far-right parties have made “Islamophobic anti-immigrant sentiment far more central to their politics than anti-Semitism.”

For Katz, this grim history provides evidence that anti-Semitism and Islamophobia are “inseparable hatreds” that have fluctuated in the context of geopolitical and nationalistic trends within Europe.

“At no time were anti-Semitism or Islamophobia entirely separate from one another,” he points out. “Rather, they were often mutually reinforcing, either through policies of divide-and-rule or through the heightened fears they produced about both Jews and Muslims.”

He closes with the following words of caution: “… when the rhetoric of either anti-Semitism or Islamophobia is invoked, whichever remains unmentioned is often present in the uncomfortable silence.”

1.7 Minorities at risk

This growing body of research raises urgent issues. Firstly, it demonstrates that the new far-right are perfectly capable of switching racialised loyalties for tactical reasons, demonstrating that Jewish and Muslim communities in Europe are very much in the same boat, regardless of public far-right overtures to Israel.

Assumptions that these overtures imply a real reduction in anti-Semitic ideology are misleading. As this investigation will show in due course, this concern applies equally to far-right overtures to other minorities traditionally discriminated against by fascist parties, including black and ethnic minorities, religious groups like Sikhs and Hindus, LGBTQI+ people, and even those with disabilities.

Secondly, political trends over the last 15 years suggest that a coalition of far-right parties—many with documented neo-Nazi sympathies—are poised to win shocking political victories across Europe over the next few years in national, regional and EU elections: and possibly as much as a third of seats in the European Parliament in 2019.

Thirdly, this prospect calls into question the stability of the entire security architecture of the postwar international system. Whatever the flaws of this system—and they are real—it has permitted peace within Europe for 66 years.

The potential fragility of intra-European cooperation and peace under a far-right resurgence should not be underestimated.

[i] Thilo Janssen, A love-hate relationship: Far-right parties and the European Union (Brussels, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, 2016) Report funded by the German Federal Foreign Office.

[ii] Jorg Luyken, ‘Hard-right AfD now 3rd biggest German party’, The (17 November 2015)

[iii] INSA survey data,

[iv] Amikam Nachmani, ‘The past as a yardstick: Europeans, Muslim migrants and the onus of European-Jewish histories’, Israel Affairs (Vol. 22, No. 2, April 2016)

[v] Ayhan Kaya, ‘“Islamophobism” as an Ideology in the West: Scapegoating Migrants of Muslim Origin’, in Anna Amelina, Kenneth Horvath, Bruno Meeus (eds.), An Anthology of Migration and Social Transformation, IMISCOE Research Series (Geneva: Springer, 2016) pp. 281-294

[vi] Bruce Stokes, Faith in European Project Reviving: Bust Most Say Rise of Eurosceptic Parties is a Good Thing (Pew Research Center, June 2015)

[vii] Anil Dawar, ‘Jewish and Muslim communities both see race hate crimes rocket’, Daily Express (30 December 2015)

[viii] ‘Anti-Semitic incidents in France down by 5 percent in 2015’, Jewish Telegraph Agency (20 January 2016)

[ix] Ethan Katz, ‘Shifting hierarchies of exclusion: colonialism, anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia in European history’, Cross Currents (Vol. 65, No. 3, September 2015) pp. 357-370

Tell MAMA independently and separately commissioned Insurge-Intelligence to look at networks of far right extremism within Europe with a view to assessing the impacts of far right extremism in Europe. The views and opinions in the reports do not necessarily represent views and opinions of Tell MAMA.






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Categories: AfD, Alternative for Germany, anti-Muslim hatred, Antisemitism, Europe, far right extremism, Far Right groups, Freedom Party, Israel, Muslim, Nafeez Ahmed, Opinions, Professor Amikam Nachman

Muslim women swabbed for explosives at Italian airport ‘because of their hijabs’


British Muslim women were subject to an explosives search for at Florence airport earlier this month.

The woman had travelled with family members for a weekend break on June 3. A majority of whom were women in hijabs. She confirmed to Tell MAMA staff that they had no issues entering Florence. But searches were carried out under their hijabs before they could return home.

A video of the incident was also passed to our staff confirms the allegations. We learn from the video that airport security

“This is Italy. This is policy. But this is how they teach us how to do it. And we have to do it. It is nothing personal”.

The women were informed that they could complain about the policy. Despite their upset, they did not object to the search, they only sought to establish its justification.

One victim told security, “In London we check under the hair – they put their hand under the hair and touch,” in reference to a drug test.

A member of the security staff then replied: “This is not a drug test. This is for bombs”.

When asked “what is the problem now?” One of the Muslim women replied “My problem? Is that you guys are racist”.

It’s clear from the video that frustrations grew when staff did not address the complaint of racial profiling. The woman who sent this video to Tell MAMA had to delete the video before she was allowed to fly. She emailed it to a family member before deletion.

Tell MAMA will raise the issue further on behalf of the victim with the Italian Embassy.


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Categories: airport, discrimination, Hijab, Italy, News

Police investigate possible hate crime against Al-Huda Islamic Centre in Sheffield

Al-Huda Islamic Centre


Police are investigating a possible hate crime against the Al-Huda Islamic Centre in Sheffield. The building is on Hanover Street.

Muhbeen Hussain, the founder of British Muslim Youth, contacted Tell MAMA about this incident this morning.

British Muslim Youth posted at 4:12am this morning:”Confirmed reports that Al-Huda Islamic Centre in Sheffield has been attacked. It may be a possible hate crime but at the moment, it is unconfirmed.

Sources are suggesting that Quran’s have been decimated and other horrible acts have been committed.”

The group also tweeted: “Al Huda Islamic Centre, Sheffield has been attacked. Qurans decimated. #risinghate”.
Photos were also attached.

Our staff are trying to contact the Islamic Centre to offer support and security advice.

The BBC’s Sheffield and South Yorkshire live blog also picked up the story.

A video from the scene has now appeared online:

We extend our gratitude to Muhbeen Hussain and British Muslim Youth for reporting this incident to Tell MAMA. It’s important to remember that every report matters.

Did you witness the incident? You can contact Tell MAMA in confidence on 0800 456 1226. Or email


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Categories: crime, hate crime, Islamic centre, News, Quran, vandalism

Naz Shah MP Deserves a Second Chance. As a Campaigner She is a Trailblazer

Naz Shah MP


It is rarely that we get involved into the political melee of the cut and thrust of politics and the political life of Members of Parliament.

On this occasion, we felt that it is was important to show support for a Member of Parliament who genuinely cares and is passionate about people. Naz Shah MP is one of those people and her recent sincere apologies for the hurt that she caused Jewish communities was heartfelt and we have also spoken to her about this. She genuinely was not aware of the impacts of her language and two years (from when she initially made the comments about Israel), have changed and shaped her into caring passionately about what minority communities think and feel and the way that they are perceived.

Naz Shah is one of the unique cases where people deserve the chance to move on and to impart her knowledge and her experiences to others so that hatred, prejudice and intolerance can be broken down. She cares passionately about tackling injustice and has learnt some hard lessons, but she is a tough and robust campaigner who will come back stronger and fitter and more in tune with understanding communities.

We sincerely hope that she can play a front line role in politics in our country. She has made her peace, now is the time that she should lead and with a renewed sense of urgency.


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Categories: Antisemitism, communities, hatred, Muslim, Naz Shah MP, Opinions