The Observatory of Islamophobia, affiliated to Cairo’s Dar al-Iftaa institution, welcomed a proposal submitted by more than 50 members of Britain’s House of Commons and House of Lords to the UK government, hoping to reclassify Islamophobia as discrimination and racism against Muslims.
The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) warned that racism against Muslims in Britain is practiced without being reported or addressed, which the Observatory claims is due to the absence of a recognized definition of Islamophobia.
The APPG’s warning came after official figures showed a rise in hate crimes motivated by racism based on religion in England and Wales, for the fifth consecutive year.
“MPs highlighted terror attacks and plots targeting Muslims, including the Finsbury Park Attack and the attempted murder of a Sikh dentist in Wales,” the Independent newspaper website reads.
“They said that rising hate crimes had affected both Muslims and those wrongly thought to be part of the religion because of their appearance, including an Italian man who was badly beaten in London,” the paper added. “The APPG cited research showing that Muslims are disadvantaged across employment, housing, education, the criminal justice system, social and public life and in political or media discourse.”
After six months of consultation with various parties, the APPG proposed that the British government adopt the definition of Islamaphobia as follows: “Islamophobia is rooted in racism, a form of racism, that targets the manifestations of Islamic identity or what is considered an identity Islamic”.
The Observatory remarked that the most important aspect tackled by the APPG was Islamophobia’s negative impact on the opportunities and quality of life enjoyed by British Muslims in all fields, including job opportunities, education, and criminal justice, housing, health care and hate crimes, which were addressed by the Observatory in many of its reports since 2015.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm.