National Council of Canadian Muslims say Islamophobia 'systemic' since 9/11
Negative attitudes towards Muslims in Canada have increased over the last twenty years since 9/11, according to a new report.
The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) released a report recently, detailing ‘systemic’ Islamophobia in Canada, which has resulted in many attacks, including the recent attack in London, Ontario where a family was run over in June, killing four and injuring one. In 2017, a man visited a mosque in Quebec City and gunned down six worshippers and wounded 19.
The NCCM also said that: “More Muslims have been killed in targeted hate-attacks in Canada than any other G-7 country in the past 5 years because of Islamophobia.”
“It's become systemic since then,” said Fatema Abdalla, communications coordinator for the NCCM. “And what we’re seeing now is that not only is it growing, but it’s also evolving.”
“Those kinds of attacks, this hatred of Muslims, it has been a constant feature of Canadian political life in the period since 9/11,” said University of British Columbia professor Sunera Thobani.
The anti-Muslim hate increased in the years immediately following the World Trade Center attack and has slowly grown since, with Statistics Canada reporting that anti-Muslim attacks numbered 99 in 2014, up from 36 in 2009.
In 2015, hate crimes ballooned to 159, a 60% jump, and in 2017 – the year of the Quebec City Mosque murders – incidents showed a dramatic increase, to 349, Canadian police reported.
"The prevailing narrative of all this sentiment was this vast conspiracy, that Muslims were trying to infiltrate and take over the West and commit a white genocide, or at least change the culture," said Evan Balgord, executive director of the Canadian Anti-Hate Network.
One of the recommendations put forth by the NCCM was a "federal Anti-Islamophobia Strategy by year-end."
“The reality is we cannot just keep adding onto a list of horrifying things that have happened,” said NCCM head Mustafa Farooq said in a story with Anadolu Agency in July. “For our community, this is about survival. "