Concern Raised Over Post-Referendum Division and Hate Crimes

27 June 2016

The Muslim Council of Britain today called on political and civic leaders to urgently come together and deal with the division that has come about as a result of the European Referendum and the campaign preceding it. In the past few days, we have witnessed shocking manifestations of hate speech not only online but also on our streets.

There have been countless incidents reported including a Polish centre being daubed with racist graffiti, a racist demonstration outside a mosque in Birmingham, and many reports of Muslims and others being taunted with ‘go back home!’ or similar sentiments. The Muslim Council of Britain has compiled over 100 incidents reported of hate crimes following the referendum result.

Calling for action, Dr. Shuja Shafi, the Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, said: “As the results of the referendum became known, I called for our politicians to come together and heal the divisions that have emerged as a result of the campaign. Now we are witnessing the shocking extent of this with reports around the country of hate speech and minorities being targeted. We need leadership now more than ever before. Our country is experiencing a political crisis which, I fear threatens the social peace. Whatever differences we may have, it is vitally important that we demonstrate solidarity for those attacked, and state, in the words of the murdered MP Jo Cox, that ‘We have far more in common than which divides us.’

“I will be writing to the Home Secretary to ask what measures are being taken to step up security and policing in areas where such incidences have been reported. And I will also be writing to the Communities Secretary to encourage that urgent initiatives be taken to build bridges between communities and to ensure that the government states clearly that intolerance against minorities is not acceptable. Finally I urge civil society and faith leaders to come together in a spirit of unity to establish a platform of hope in the face of much division today.”

[ends]

Notes to Editors:

  1. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK’s largest Muslim umbrella body with over
    500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques,
    charities and schools.
  2. See: http://www.mcb.org.uk/post-referendum-hate-crimes/

3. For further information please contact:
The Muslim Council of Britain
PO Box 57330
London
E1 2WJ
Tel: 0845 26 26 786
Fax: 0207 247 7079
[email protected]

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