New York - Acts of Islamophobia in France have been on the rise since the Charlie Hebdo attacks last January and even more so after the Paris attacks of November 13.
New York – Acts of Islamophobia in France have been on the rise since the Charlie Hebdo attacks last January and even more so after the Paris attacks of November 13.
Terrorists are getting what they want – create divisions between Muslims and the rest of the world. Chants, slogans, demonstrations, and a series of hate speech have been targeting Muslims all throughout 2015. Islamophobia has reached a “peak” according to the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM), which represents the nearly six million Muslims in France.
Twelve days after the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris, 128 anti-Muslim acts were reported, which almost equals the number of anti-Islam acts reported throughout 2014, according to the Observatory against Islamophobia of the CFCM.
Thirty-two acts of violence against Muslims had been registered in France as of November 21 and the number has grown ever since. Racist demonstrators ransacked on Friday night a Muslim prayer hall in Ajaccio, the capital of the island of Corsica, attempted to burn copies of the Koran, and injured a police officer and two firefighters.
AFP reported that the protesters “shouted slogans in Corsican meaning ‘Arabs get out!’ and ‘this is our home!’” “We must stop these behaviors,” the prefecture of Corsica said on Sunday, banning demonstrations until January 4 in some Ajaccio neighborhoods, denouncing them as “shocking and unacceptable”.
Members of the Muslim community in France live in constant fear and insecurity as their places of worship are being vandalized and manifestations of hate and intolerance have become the norm.
Bigotry is spreading rapidly via social media networks as form of “cyber hate.”
The Muslim council “calls on citizens not to equate the vast majority of French Muslims, who live in peace, with a tiny minority that advocates violence and even death in the name of our religion.”
Meanwhile, the National Front, France’s far-right political party, has made statements that promote hatred toward Islam followers. “At home, we do not live in djellaba” Marion Maréchal-Le Pen, niece of Marine Le Pen said in early December.
“We are not a land of Islam, and the French can be Muslims, provided that they comply with the customs and lifestyle shaped by Greek, Roman, and sixteen centuries of Christian influence,” she added.
French President François Hollande called this week for “solidarity” and “fraternity” among all French people, because “what those who attack us want is to divide us, to separate us,” he said.
In addition, the French government has asked mosque leaders to open their doors to the public on January 9 and 10 to enjoy a “tea of brotherhood.”
“People will be able to ask any questions they wish, even the most taboo, our religion, how to pray, over tea and pastries,” in order to “break the distrust,” Anwar Kbibech, president of the CFCM said.