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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16 Sep 2019

Today in Islamophobia: New Jersey’s Muslim mayor is detained at JFK, as cops in Missouri resign over Islamophobic posts. A lifestyle website for Muslim teens in the U.K is found to be funded by the Home Office. Our recommended read of the day is on Xinjiang and China’s ongoing targeting of Uighur Muslims. New reports show the government has installed facial recognition scanners in mosques in the region. This, and more, below:


16 Sep 2019

Videos show how China has installed facial recognition scanners in Uighur mosques

A video filmed in China in July shows facial recognition scanners at the entrances to several mosques in Ürümqi, the capital of the northwestern region of Xinjiang, home to more than 10 million people from the Uighur Muslim minority. Experts who have been following the Chinese crackdown on the Uighur community say that these scanners are the latest in a push to put this region under total surveillance. The use of facial recognition technology in mosques is just one component in the vast surveillance system set up by the Chinese government to police the Uighur community. The Chinese government gathers information on the movements of millions of Uighurs in Xinjiang. It also gathers a wealth of personal information – -from unusually high electricity consumption to unfriendly behaviour towards neighbours – which they claim is part of the effort to fight against “terrorism” in Xinjiang. In 2019, NGO Human Rights Watch published a report describing an app used by the Chinese police to gather such information. read the complete article

Our recommended read of the day

United States

16 Sep 2019

Muslim NJ mayor detained at JFK airport: 'Did you meet with terrorists?'

Mohamed Khairullah told that he was held for hours at JFK International Airport in New York and questioned about his travels overseas and specifically whether he visited any "terrorist cells" or met with any "terrorists." “It’s flat-out insulting,” Khairullah said. “It’s flat-out stereotyping of Muslims and Arabs.” “It was definitely a hurtful moment where I’m thinking in my mind that this is not the America that I know,” he continued. “I am very familiar with our laws and Constitution, and everything that was going on there was a violation.” Khairullah told that agents told him that his questioning was part of a random stop and also included questions about his past history such as his college studies and his mother's name. His phone was also taken by agents who later returned it after intervention from an attorney with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a major advocacy group. read the complete article

16 Sep 2019

‘Filthy religion.’ Cop resigns over anti-Islamic posts online, Missouri chief says

The police officer with the Sikeston Department of Public Safety in southeast Missouri described Islam as a “filthy religion” and called for the deportation of Muslims in Facebook posts, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations of Missouri. The officer wrote that Muslims should “take all your perverted beliefs elsewhere,” a screenshot from Facebook shows, according to CAIR. “I get to choose whom I dislike and it just so happens to be all Muslims and their beliefs,” the police officer said in the Facebook post, according to the organization. read the complete article

16 Sep 2019

Avengers: Endgame’ Directors’ Next Battle: Taking On Trumpian Islamophobia

Marking the directorial debut of Matthew Michael Carnahan, Mosul tells the remarkable true story of the Nineveh SWAT team—an elite group of Iraqi soldiers fighting like hell to reclaim their fallen city from ISIS. All of the men in the unit are on a mission of vengeance, as its sine qua non is you must have lost a family member to ISIS in order to join. “For us, we can say this is the first film to represent Arabs in a positive way, Iraqis in a positive way and Muslims in a positive way. In war movies, there’s the American Sniper problem: You never see what’s on the opposite side,” says producer Mohamed Al-Daradji, himself kidnapped by Iraqi insurgents in the early aughts, who handled the logistics of the Marrakech film shoot. “We’ve never had a chance to represent ourselves at this level.” read the complete article

United Kingdom

16 Sep 2019

Lifestyle website for Muslim teens is covertly funded by the Home Office

SuperSisters was built in 2015 by J-Go Media, a company of nine staff members from east London that describes itself as “a not-for-profit community group” and has two decades of experience of engaging with Muslim communities in East London. SuperSisters is promoted as a “global platform for young Muslimahs in east London to share and create inspiring and empowering content”. But after realising that recent funding for the project was coming from Building a Stronger Britain Together (BSBT), an arm of the government’s counter-extremism strategy, readers expressed anger and accused its directors of betraying the Muslim community. Two Muslim employees have since resigned. read the complete article


16 Sep 2019

Canada's Trudeau says he could one day challenge Quebec ban on religious symbols

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday said for the first time he might challenge a decision by the province of Quebec to ban public employees from wearing religious symbols, a stance that could hurt him with voters. The Quebec law - which came into force in June - bars teachers, judges and police officers from wearing overt religious symbols such as hijabs and Jewish skull caps. The government says the law is necessary to ensure society is secular. Critics charge it is a racist measure aimed at the province’s Muslims. read the complete article

16 Sep 2019

Quebec’s religious symbols ban a major issue in federal election campaign

The new Quebec law that bans many public servants from wearing visible religious symbols has become a major issue in the federal election campaign. This isn’t a Quebec-versus-the-rest-of-Canada conflict. This is the shires against the cities, old stock versus those who welcome newcomers, the Canada that was against what Canada is becoming. This is a conflict on the rise, not the wane. Mario Levesque, a political scientist at Mount Allison University, agrees that Bill 21, as the Quebec legislation was known before it came law, divides Quebec from the rest of Canada. But even more, he says, it divides rural Canada from urban Canada. When it comes to accepting high levels of immigration and the racial and cultural diversity that follows, “I would almost limit that to some of the bigger cities,” he said in an interview. “In other parts of Canada, I think there is some support for Bill 21." read the complete article


16 Sep 2019

The Rohingya are a people of nowhere. They shouldn’t be abandoned.

TWO YEARS ago, Myanmar’s military launched a crackdown of fire and violence against the Muslim Rohingya population of Rakhine state in the western part of the country. In the attacks, which the United States has described as ethnic cleansing and U.N. investigators called possible crimes against humanity, civilians were killed, their villages burned to the ground and some 750,000 people fled for their lives. Now, the displaced Rohingya languish in neighboring Bangladesh, a seething humanitarian challenge, while Buddhist-majority Myanmar, also known as Burma, tries to cover up and forget the destruction of Rohingya villages and homes. read the complete article

Today in Islamophobia, 16 Sep 2019 Edition


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