World Bulletin / News Desk
A conference on Islamophobia began in Istanbul on Friday to discuss strategies and policies for combatting Islamophobia.
The three-day conference, hosted by the Center for Islam and Global Affairs at Istanbul’s Sabahattin Zaim University, has the theme “Contextualizing Islamophobia: Its Impact on Culture and Global Politics.”
“We need to have a way of thinking around how we understand the phenomenon of Islamophobia,” said Salman Sayyid of the University of Leeds, co-editor of the book Thinking Through Islamophobia: Global Perspectives.
“Conceptually rather than simply drawing various kinds of lists all the time, arguing about the definitions.”
According to a report by the Ankara-based Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA), a rising wave of Islamophobia has taken hold in Europe.
The European Islamophobia Report (EIR) revealed 908 crimes, ranging from verbal and physical attacks to murder attempts, targeting Muslims in Germany, as well as 664 in Poland, 364 in the Netherlands, 256 in Austria, 121 in France, 56 in Denmark, and 36 in Belgium.
Mehmet Gormez, the former head of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate, also spoke at the conference on the role of Muslim scholars and combatting Islamophobia.
Featuring scholars from Turkey as well as worldwide, the conference focuses on Islamophobia on culture, society, politics, and international relations.
The conference is intended to spur a discussion of “strategies and policies that need to be adopted and pursued to end or reduce the harmful and detrimental effects of Islamophobia,” according to the university’s website.
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‘Islamophobia is no longer is restricted to where there are Muslim minorities’ says Salman Sayyid of the University of Leeds