London – CAGE is wary of attempts to define Islamophobia that stop short of facing up to the real issues.
Discussions around defining Islamophobia have so far failed to acknowledge the significant role of policies like PREVENT and Schedule 7 which are primarily targeted at Muslims and have resulted in institutionalised Islamophobia – and the crucial need to do away with these policies if we are to move forward.
These policies together with actions of the state that are part of the unending ‘War on Terror’ which include the invasion of Muslim majority countries, while sustaining a deceptive counter extremism industry at home, demonise Islam. This creates an environment that facilitates incidents of abuse and violence against Muslims.
The current definition fails to recognise this by removing the general demonisation of Islam from the attacks on Muslims or manifestations of Muslim identity.
Asim Qureshi, Research Director of CAGE said:
“The rise of Islamophobia is no surprise when the toxic Prevent programme has trained half a million plus public sector workers and many others to view Muslims as suspects by pathologising ideas and behaviours. This has allowed everyday bigotry to be upscaled to a national level.”
“If the definition of Islamophobia cannot hold those in power to account for their role in manufacturing Islamophobia, then it is inadequate.”
CC Image courtesy of Flickr/FarzanaL
(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)