Today in Islamophobia

A daily list of headlines about Islamophobia
compiled by the Bridge Initiative

Each day, the Bridge Initiative aims to bring you the news you need to know about Islamophobia. This resource will be updated every weekday at approximately 11:00 AM EST.

Today in Islamophobia Newsletter

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19 Dec 2019

Today in Islamophobia: The Indian government muzzles citizenship amendment protest, enforcing internet blackouts and detaining protesters. A NYT investigation reveals China may be knitting a “surveillance blanket” by connecting every day items with high tech equipment to create a sweeping tool for authoritarian control. Britain First urges supporters to join the Conservative Party, even as the Tories launch a review into allegations of Islamophobia within the party. Our recommended read today is from India, and how the recent protests might be the tipping point against authoritarianism. This, and more, below:


19 Dec 2019

Opinion | India’s protests could be a tipping point against authoritarianism | Recommended Read

Fahad is one of thousands of students who have taken to the streets of India to protest the citizenship bill that was passed in Parliament last week. The bill allows the Indian government to grant expedited citizenship to persecuted minorities from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, excluding Muslims. The crackdown on these institutions was anticipated when Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a veiled reference to Muslims at an election rally on Sunday. In yet another one of his consistent dog whistles, Modi said, “We can recognize the people who start the fire from their clothing.” read the complete article

Our recommended read for today
19 Dec 2019

India clamps down on citizenship law protests

Authorities have imposed an emergency law banning large gatherings in parts of India’s capital, Delhi, as nationwide protests escalated, injuring police and demonstrators. A week after a controversial new citizenship law was passed by parliament, which has been accused of openly discriminating against Muslims, protests across the country showed no sign of abating. Clashes between demonstrators and police in the Seelampur district of Delhi turned violent on Tuesday, with 21 injured and buses and a police outpost set alight, leading police to bring in emergency measures to prevent the gathering of more than four people in certain Muslim-dominated areas of the city. read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

Citizenship Amendment Act: The students versus the regime

They are protesting because they feel the Citizenship Amendment Act is discriminatory and part of a Hindu-nationalist agenda to marginalise India's 200-million Muslim minority. Prime Minister Narendra Modi says the new law was "for those who have faced years of persecution outside and have no place to go except India". The demonstrations were triggered by the perceived police brutality at two leading universities in Delhi and the northern city of Aligarh. Police entered campuses and allegedly attacked students inside the library, reading halls and toilets. Distressing videos of the violence have gone viral and fuelled anger across the country. read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

AMU: Student’s Hand Amputated, ‘Police Violence Worse Than In Jamia’

Doctors on Tuesday had to amputate the hand of a student of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) who suffered injuries during the clashes that erupted in the campus on Sunday. The students were protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and in solidarity with the students of Jamia Millia Islamia who were baton-charged by police in Delhi earlier that day. The AMU student was injured when the police fired tear gas shells to disperse the protesters. read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

India muzzles citizenship law protests, detaining thousands and shutting down Internet in parts of the capital

Indian authorities on Thursday clamped down on demonstrations against a contentious citizenship law, invoking a measure to prohibit public gatherings in two states and parts of the nation's capital, together home to more than 260 million people. A coalition of civil society groups called for rallies across the country on Thursday to voice opposition to the law, which opponents say is discriminatory and violates India’s constitution. The law creates a fast-track to citizenship for migrants from six religions who arrived in India by 2014, but excludes Muslims. read the complete article


19 Dec 2019

Mahathir: Islamic Conference in KL to Tackle Islamophobia

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said Wednesday an Islamic conference that includes leaders from Iran, Turkey and Qatar is aimed at tackling Islamophobia and finding solutions to challenges facing the Muslim world. Mahathir said the three-day conference, which starts Thursday, will bolster Muslim unity and be a platform “to do something to improve the lives of Muslims the world over." “We feel that we need to overcome Islamophobia. We need to find a way to address our shortcomings, our dependency on non-Muslims to protect ourselves against the enemies of Islam," he said at a welcoming dinner, without elaborating. read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

FC Cologne pull out of deal to run football academy in China

FC Cologne are pulling out of a deal to run a football academy in China, with a member of the club council saying they should not support “such a totalitarian and brutal dictatorship”. The deal, which was going to be worth €1.8m (£1.5m) to the club, was originally put on hold in the summer and on Wednesday Cologne said they would not go ahead with it. read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

Opinion | The people heartened by Peter Handke’s Nobel prize are genocide deniers

Handke is seen by his critics as a genocide denier and supporter of Serb ultranationalism. Handke’s response to these criticisms in a recent interview is typical of his attitude towards the allegations: “Not one word I have written about Yugoslavia can be denounced, not a single one. It’s literature.” read the complete article


19 Dec 2019

China appears to add a sickening new dimension to its treatment of Uighurs

At A news conference in Beijing recently, the head of China’s Xinjiang province in the far northwest, Shohrat Zakir, said that “trainees” in a notorious archipelago of reeducation camps had all “graduated,” and “with the help of the government, stable employment has been achieved and their quality of life has been improved.” In reality, China has corralled more than 1 million ethnic Uighurs and other Turkic Muslims into concentration camps in Xinjiang in order to wipe out their language, religion and culture. So what did they graduate to? read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

A Surveillance Net Blankets China’s Cities, Giving Police Vast Powers

Chinese authorities are knitting together old and state-of-the-art technologies — phone scanners, facial-recognition cameras, face and fingerprint databases and many others — into sweeping tools for authoritarian control, according to police and private databases examined by The New York Times. Once combined and fully operational, the tools can help police grab the identities of people as they walk down the street, find out who they are meeting with and identify who does and doesn’t belong to the Communist Party. The United States and other countries use some of the same techniques to track terrorists or drug lords. Chinese cities want to use them to track everybody. read the complete article

United Kingdom

19 Dec 2019

Conservative Party launches review into Islamophobia claims

The Conservative Party launched an independent review Wednesday into its response to complaints of Islamophobia and other forms of discrimination within the party. The review will be spearheaded by Professor Swaran Singh, a former commissioner of the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Once the review was announced, the MCB tweeted that "this appointment is at risk of being seen in the same light as Conservatives customary approach to Islamophobia, that of denial, dismissal and deceit". read the complete article

19 Dec 2019

Britain First urges supporters to join Conservative Party ‘to make Boris Johnson’s leadership more secure’

Far-right Britain First is urging its supporters to join the Conservative Party in order to “make Boris Johnson’s leadership more secure”. The extremist group, whose leaders were jailed last year, sent an email to subscribers claiming “thousands” of its activists were becoming members of the Tories. read the complete article


19 Dec 2019

What’s Happening With the Rohingya Crisis Now?

Around 745,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar since violence against the ethnic minority started in 2017—most to neighboring Bangladesh, according to OCHA. As of March 2019, over 909,000 Rohingya refugees have gathered in Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh, which is now home to the world’s largest refugee camp. There they remain, refusing early repatriation for fear for their lives. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 19 Dec 2019 Edition


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