Hawzah News Agency (London, UK) – The Chair of Finsbury Park Mosque, Mohammed Kozbar, has welcomed, on March 5, the decision of Islington Council to adopt a new definition of Islamophobia, urging the British Government to take more action on the phenomenon.
“We’re pleased to have Islington on board. Islamophobia is real, it affects individuals and families. We as a community are grateful to Islington Council as the public will learn about the issue of Islamophobia,” Kozbar expressed.
Islington Council is the fourth in Britain to adopt the Islamophobia definition recommended by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on British Muslims. Newham, Redbridge, and Oxford are the only other councils to have adopted the definition.
Actually, no official British definition of Islamophobia existed until the APPG on British Muslims report was published last November.
On his behalf, the leader of Islington Council, Cllr Richard Watts, said: “There’s no place for hate in Islington. We’re proud to be a welcoming, inclusive borough that celebrates diversity and champions inclusion.”
Kozbar added: “We’d like to put more pressure on the government to adopt this definition as the Muslim community and the wider community will benefit.”
In fact, Finsbury Park Mosque has been the target of repeated Islamophobic attacks of late. It was the site of a terrorist attack in 2017, when Darren Osborne drove a van into a crowd gathered outside killing one man and injuring 12 others.
In a more recent attack, a pig’s head was put on a gate at the entrance while arsonists have also targeted the mosque.
The estimates of 2009 suggested a total of about 2.4 million Muslims over all the UK. According to the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, the number of Muslims in Britain could now be around 3 million.
Between 2001 and 2009 the Muslim population increased roughly ten times faster than the rest of society. Most Muslim immigrants to Britain came from formerly occupied nations.
The London Borough of Islington in England has an estimated population of 215,667. The entity remains the second-smallest borough in London and the third-smallest district in England.