Tory members' online comments deepen Islamophobia row

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 March, 2019 - 18:00

Exclusive: messages seen by the Guardian refer to Muslims as ‘cavemen’ and should be ‘rounded up’

Five new self-professed Conservative members have been revealed to have posted Islamophobic or racist comment on Facebook, prompting fresh concerns about anti-Muslim sentiment in the Conservative party.

Messages seen by the Guardian refer to Muslims as “cavemen”, call for them to be “rounded up and returned to point of origin” and claim “most” of the religion’s followers are sex offenders.

Related: Tory Islamophobia row: 15 suspended councillors quietly reinstated

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'The nation is behind us': New Zealand shares pain of Christchurch Muslims

The Guardian World news: Islam - 24 March, 2019 - 00:47

One week after massacre, deputy mayor describes a ‘city in shock’ but feels legacy will be one of greater understanding

It began to drizzle as Hati Mohemmed Daoud Nabi was laid to rest in the freshly dug earth of Memorial park cemetery in Christchurch.

The 71-year-old was the fifth to be buried on Thursday. Six days earlier, he was the first to die when he held open the door of Masjid Al Noor on Deans Avenue in Christchurch and greeted a stranger with: “Hello, brother.”

Related: 'Remain resolute': Christchurch students' haka tribute has roots in earthquake

Related: New Zealand asks: how was the threat from the far right missed?

Related: Thousands attend vigil in Dunedin for victims of Christchurch attack

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Christchurch attack: Al Noor mosque handed back to Muslim community

The Guardian World news: Islam - 23 March, 2019 - 01:44

Leaders and worshippers escorted through cordon by police as life begins to return to normal

Muslim community leaders and worshippers have been escorted back to one of two mosques targeted in the New Zealand terror attack.

Two groups were taken through the cordon to Masjid Al Noor on Saturday morning, accompanied by a delegation of dignitaries. They received a briefing from officers on the street before being led to the front door where the shooting rampage that killed 50 began.

Related: Erdoğan praises New Zealand PM after row over mosque attacks

Related: Christchurch attacks: New Zealand brings in sweeping gun-law changes

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Institutional racism and the rise of anti-Muslim attitudes | Letters

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 17:06
Prof Yasmin Alibhai-Brown et al urge the mainstream political parties to acknowledge and confront all forms of racism, Liam O’Keefe says we must resist anti-Muslim behaviour so as to avoid the mistakes of the past and Gillian Dalley on nativist ideology

Baroness Warsi has repeatedly accused the Conservative party of institutional Islamophobia and called for an independent inquiry (Tory party suspends 14 members over allegedly Islamophobic remarks, 6 March).

Her concerns echo the evidence of a recent report by the anti-racist advocacy group Hope Not Hate. Surely the time is long overdue for the leadership to listen to her rather than insisting, as all political parties tend to do, that the main problem with racist abuse and discrimination always lies elsewhere.

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Anti-Muslim hate crimes soar in UK after Christchurch shootings

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 15:05

Exclusive: rise in number of incidents related to NZ attacks alarms community groups

The number of anti-Muslim hate crimes reported across Britain increased by 593% in the week after a white supremacist killed worshippers at two New Zealand mosques, an independent monitoring group has said.

The charity Tell Mama said almost all of the increase comprised incidents linked to the Christchurch attacks last Friday, and there had been more recorded hate incidents in the last seven days than in the week after the 2017 Islamist terrorist attack in Manchester.

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It’s time for my Conservative party to root out Islamophobia for good | Shaun Bailey

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 13:24
There is simply too much hate appearing under our banner. We cannot give cover to these intolerant voices, even if they vote for us

• Shaun Bailey is the Conservative London mayoral candidate

For better or worse, it’s in our nature to avoid difficult conversations. And no wonder: a tough conversation poorly held can hurt more than it heals.

But avoidance only takes you so far. From my time as a youth worker I know that difficult conversations don’t become easier the longer you put them off. That’s why I know it’s time for Conservatives to have a proper conversation about Islamophobia. There is simply too much hate floating around online these days and too much of it is appearing (intentionally or not) under our banner. We must root it out, now.

Related: The Tories are tough on Islamophobia? What a joke | Jonathan Freedland

Related: Tory London mayoral pick under fire for remarks about Muslims and Hindus

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We still can’t take LGBT equality for granted | Gaby Hinsliff

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 06:00
The outcry over primary school sex education is a reminder that we haven’t moved as far from Section 28 as we thought

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin.

So opens a Jackanory-style film uploaded to social media this week by one Birmingham mother, featuring her reading aloud from a picture book called Mommy, Mama and Me. It’s a cosy, toddler-friendly bedtime story about two mothers doing what mothers do the world over: pouring juice, tucking children up in bed, playing hide and seek. Your children’s primary school or your local library might well have a copy. Although they might have plumped instead for And Tango Makes Three, the tale of two daddy penguins adopting a chick.

Related: Lives are ruined by shame and stigma. LGBT lessons in schools are vital | Hannah Jane Parkinson

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'We are one': New Zealanders observe Muslim call to prayer – video

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 02:11

People across New Zealand observed the Muslim call to prayer on Friday as the nation marked a week since the Christchurch mosque massacres. As thousands gathered in Hagley Park opposite the city's Al Noor mosque, prime minister Jacinda Ardern tells the crowd: 'We are one.' Thousands more listened on the radio or watched on television. The prayer was followed by two minutes of silence

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Scott Morrison won't say if Pauline Hanson is racist

The Guardian World news: Islam - 22 March, 2019 - 00:41

Prime minister instead says Coalition has worked with One Nation leader on ‘a lot of important issues’

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, has dodged the question of whether Pauline Hanson is racist, saying the right thing to do after Christchurch is to “reach out to the Muslim community and give them a big hug”.

Morrison said he did not believe people should apply a broad brush to the One Nation leader and pick on one issue, as she had something to contribute on other issues, such as family court reform – on which she has been criticised for promoting the views of men’s rights activists.

Related: Channel Seven says Pauline Hanson still welcome after Koch Christchurch accusation

Related: ‘It’s OK to be white’ is not a joke, it’s careless politicians helping the far right | Jason Wilson

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Windows smashed at five mosques in Birmingham

The Guardian World news: Islam - 21 March, 2019 - 10:49

Counter-terrorism officers investigating after series of attacks overnight

Counter-terrorism police are investigating after windows were smashed at five mosques in Birmingham.

West Midlands police were first called at 2.32am to a mosque on Birchfield Road, Perry Barr, where a man was reported to be breaking windows with a sledgehammer. Officers arrived to find that the incident had happened some time earlier.

ITV News has obtained CCTV footage of what appears to be one of five attacks on mosques in Birmingham overnight.
A man can be seen walking along Broadway, Perry Barr, in the early hours of the morning, before swinging an object at the building

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Scott Morrison tells Waleed Aly he sought to lower fears on Islam, not exploit them

The Guardian World news: Islam - 21 March, 2019 - 09:38

Prime minister admits shadow cabinet discussed issue in 2010 but insists that he was seeking to avoid worsening divisions

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, has admitted a discussion took place in shadow cabinet in 2010 about community fears about Muslims, but said his contribution was intended to “lower the fears about Islam and not elevate them”.

In a wide-ranging interview with Waleed Aly on the Channel Ten program The Project, Morrison refused to answer repeated questions about whether he would insist that One Nation be put last on how-to-vote cards, while declaring his track record was to bring communities together.

Related: Scott Morrison suffers historic defeat as Labor and crossbench pass medevac bill

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Labour formally adopts definition of Islamophobia

The Guardian World news: Islam - 20 March, 2019 - 12:28

All-party parliamentary group definition says Islamophobia is ‘rooted in racism’

The Labour party has formally adopted a definition of Islamophobia, arguing that it is vital to tackling the rise of far-right racism.

A party spokesperson said its national executive committee had adopted the working definition produced by the all-party parliamentary group on British Muslims “to help tackle Islamophobia, build a common understanding of its causes and consequences, and express solidarity with Muslim communities”.

Related: ‘Systemic Islamophobia’ fuels terror attacks, say Muslim leaders

Related: Conservatives under fire for failing to tackle party's Islamophobia

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Republicans must follow Ardern’s lead and stand up to the gun lobby | Dani Garavelli

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 March, 2019 - 13:16
In stark contrast to the US, New Zealand is showing how a country invested in the safety of its citizens ought to respond

Hours after 50 worshippers were killed at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was already promising to tighten up the country’s gun laws. It’s a stark contrast to Donald Trump’s reaction to mass shootings, a written-by-numbers offer of “thoughts and prayers”, then a twiddle of his thumbs until the next atrocity. New Zealand’s response seems to have more in common with Scotland where the massacre at Dunblane primary school in 1996 led to a ban on all handguns.

There are some pronounced differences between the two countries. New Zealand’s gun laws are lax; the UK’s gun laws had already been tightened and semi-automatic centrefire rifles banned in the wake of the Hungerford massacre in 1987. But what Scotland and New Zealand share is little previous experience of spree shootings, a visceral shock at the scale of their country’s loss and a determination to prevent it happening again.

Related: New Zealand attack: victims of the mosque massacre

Related: Naming the Christchurch suspect is a choice. The media must make it carefully | Gaby Hinsliff

Related: Andrew Bolt and my other media colleagues seem incapable of self-reflection after Christchurch | Gay Alcorn

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'Real leaders do exist': Jacinda Ardern uses solace and steel to guide a broken nation

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 March, 2019 - 05:41

The 38-year-old prime minister has been tested like no other New Zealand leader before by the worst terrorism attack in the nation’s modern history

In the hours after a gunman killed 50 people at two mosques in central Christchurch, prime minister Jacinda Ardern called a press conference that set the tone for a grief-stricken country. It has become a seminal moment of her leadership story.

The 38-year-old prime minister has been tested like few New Zealand leaders before, leading the country as it deals with the worst terrorism attack in the nation’s modern history.

Related: New Zealand shooting: Ardern says she will never speak suspect's name

Related: The Christchurch massacre and the rise of far-right extremism

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Andrew Bolt and my other media colleagues seem incapable of self-reflection after Christchurch | Gay Alcorn

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 March, 2019 - 02:18

The both sides argument has rung hollow for years, but at this moment it is disgusting

On Monday morning, Sunrise host David Koch took Pauline Hanson on.

“Pauline, this terrorist manifesto almost reads like One Nation immigration and Muslim policy. Do you in any way feel complicit in this atrocity?”

Related: Australians are asking how did we get here? Well, Islamophobia is practically enshrined as public policy | Jason Wilson

Related: Welcome to the latest edition of It's Never Ever White People's Fault | First Dog on the Moon

Gay Alcorn is the Melbourne editor of Guardian Australia

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Muslim Sky News staffer quits and says channel increases ‘polarisation and paranoia’

The Guardian World news: Islam - 19 March, 2019 - 01:50

Rashna Farrukh says the Christchurch massacre shows media coverage has ‘real life consequences’

A young Muslim woman says she quit her junior liaison job at Sky News after the Christchurch massacre because she felt the commentators were increasing polarisation and fear.

“Some nights I felt physically sick, others I even shed tears in my car on the way home,” Rashna Farrukh wrote for ABC online after resigning from Sky after three years. “I continued to compromise my values. Not only my values as a member of a religious group who was continuously being blamed and alienated by the rhetoric on these shows, but also as an aspiring journalist.

Just the usual factual errors from #theirABC as they use a young person with no demand for journalistic standards such as the citation of examples, quotes and facts. Just the right feelings and the desired ideological stance. Shame. #theirABC already forced to correct.

Hate clicks is not responsible reach, ABC. This was the ratio of reactions immediately after the national broadcaster finished Facebook live streaming Fr*ser Ann*ng's presser yesterday, giving him an uncritical platform to spew his hatred

.@craigmcmurtrie: "The press conference was taken and to be honest, that was simply because the memo didn't reach a particular producer and so it was live streamed"
@Raf_Epstein: "So it was a mistake to broadcast live on Facebook?"@craigmcmurtrie: "Yes"#auspol #FraserAnning

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After the Christchurch massacre, how do we deal with the trauma and outrage? | Sara Mansour

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 March, 2019 - 22:44

When someone makes an inappropriate joke, or when a senator makes incendiary remarks, speak up

When I walked into work on Monday I told myself I was going to be strong. Then an Indigenous colleague pulled me aside and hugged me and I crumbled in her arms. She told me that the Indigenous community was so sorry for what has happened to our community, and we talked and cried. I, like many other Muslims, have felt the pain of the Christchurch mosque massacre so viscerally.

I was so shaken that I did not step out at all over the weekend.

Related: Until Christchurch I thought it was worth debating with Islamophobes. Not any more | Nesrine Malik

If this is not the Australia that we know, then we have to prove it.

Sara Mansour is a lawyer, poet and the co-founder and director of the Bankstown Poetry Slam

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Q&A recap: Liberal senator Linda Reynolds says medevac bill made her ‘almost physically ill’

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 March, 2019 - 19:56

Reynolds’ response to question on Christchurch attack prompts Tony Jones to ask whether she was linking refugees with terrorism

Liberal senator Linda Reynolds has told ABC’s Q&A program that the passage of last month’s medevac bill for critically sick refugees made her “almost physically ill” because she “lived through terrorism and … the Bali bombings”.

Reynolds had been asked, in light of the Christchurch terror attack, whether Australia’s politicians and media had built a fear of migrants and “others” over the past decade.

Related: Jacinda Ardern is showing the world what real leadership is: sympathy, love and integrity | Suzanne Moore

Related: Channel Seven says Pauline Hanson still welcome after Koch Christchurch accusation

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Anti-Muslim bigotry cannot go unchecked | Letter

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 March, 2019 - 18:23
Letter: Muslim leaders condemn the Christchurch attack and call on authorities to increase efforts to combat Islamophobia

We are horrified by the cold-blooded massacre of 50 peaceful Muslim worshippers, including women and children, in Christchurch, New Zealand, last Friday. The brutal and merciless killing of innocent and defenceless worshippers devastates us. Our thoughts and prayers are with the scores of injured who remain hospitalised. Our deepest, heartfelt condolences go out to the families who have lost their loved ones. We pray that the agony of the bereaved may find some comfort and solace in knowing those slain will be granted paradise, God willing.

In recent times, we have seen levels of racist and anti-religious sentiments on the rise globally. We witnessed the horrific terror attacks at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, the church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina, and Muslim worshippers mowed down in Finsbury Park, London. In each of these cases, the perpetrators self-identified as holding far-right nationalist views and expressed hatred for racial and religious minorities. Views such as these have found a natural home in far-right populist narratives. If such abhorrent views go unchecked in the media, and indeed within mainstream political discourse and institutions, minority communities of all descriptions will continue to face increasing threats of persecution around the world.

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Why was I asked to condemn Islamist violence days after Christchurch? | Latifa Akay

The Guardian World news: Islam - 18 March, 2019 - 12:59

I believe white supremacy fuelled the attack, failing to recognise this lays groundwork for more violence

Less than two days after the horror of the massacre of 50 Muslims in two mosques in New Zealand, I was asked in an interview on the BBC news channel whether or not I think Muslim communities in the UK do enough to condemn Islamist extremism.

“There’s a straightforward problem here, isn’t there – one of the reasons that some of this language has become common is bluntly because of the Islamist violence and the Islamist extremism that has happened – one of the criticisms we hear in this country has been that there isn’t enough criticism of those people by the mainstream Islamic community – what do you say to that?”

Blaming the victim here. Extraordinary.#NewZealandTerroristAttack

Related: New Zealand attack: victims of the mosque massacre

Related: Police declare stabbing in Surrey a terrorism incident

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