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Report: Rise in Islamophobia and anti-refugee sentiments in Europe

Refugees in Greece trying to reach Europe by foot [file photo]
Refugees in Greece trying to reach Europe by foot

 

Islamophobic and anti-refugee sentiment are on the increase in Europe after the terrorist attacks that took place in France and Denmark, the European Commission Against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) revealed in its annual report yesterday.

Some countries witnessed a remarkable rise in Islamophobia after the terror attacks that erupted in Copenhagen, Denmark, and in Paris, France, the report added.

On 13 November, Paris witnessed a series of terrorist attacks in which 130 people were killed and 350 others were wounded. Daesh claimed responsibility for the attacks, driving the French government to declare a state of emergency across the country.

Copenhagen witnessed two consecutive bombings on the 14 and 15 of February 2015, in which three people were killed and five policemen were injured.

The ECRI, which is affiliated with the Council of Europe, added in its report that hostility against refugees was not confined to supporters of right-wing parties but expanded to include members of the public.

The report noted that a number of far-right parties took advantage of the attacks to launch racist campaigns against Islam and Muslims. They claimed the perpetrators were Syrians who came to Europe through the Balkans. Through these allegations, extremist parties managed to spread hatred and promote feelings of hatred and negative thoughts towards immigrants, ECRI added.

“Countries need to combat racist violence and implement integration policies for migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees”, ECRI’s head Christian Ahlund said. “The principle of fair distribution is a key element for the development of effective policies in this delicate area.”

 

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