The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) is deeply saddened by the murderous attack on a Muslim family in Ontario, Canada. The police have said there is evidence that the attack, which sadly left four dead and hospitalised a 9-year old boy, was motivated by hate.
Zara Mohammed, Secretary General of the MCB said: “Our sincere thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. This act of terror serves as a stark and deadly reminder of the consequences of Islamophobia.”
This latest terror attack against Muslims in Canada highlights the dangers of a particularly pernicious manifestation of Islamophobia. It affects Muslim minorities in the West who must deal with skewed and unrepresentative narratives that begin in the media and are amplified on social media. Just a few days ago, there were headlines that falsely implied and called British towns “no-go areas for white people” because of their Muslim populations. Studies have shown that such narratives that dehumanise and generalise Muslims can lead to attacks on entire communities.
There is now an even greater need for communities to work together and for decision makers to challenge such divisive and destructive action. Here in the UK, the MCB has already called for the adoption of a definition of islamophobia here in the UK and recognises there is still much work to be done in addressing its systemic and institutional nature, particularly within the media. As Muslims around the world continue to endure Islamophobia, there must be real and sustained action from leaders across the spectrum to address the root of the problem.