The initiative, which first started six years ago, has now expanded from Germany to the Netherlands, Austria, Belgium, France, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Italy and Switzerland. Turkish youth in Australia and Canada also participated for the first time. Organizers say over 210,000 people were given roses and informative leaflets in 12 countries.
Meanwhile, Belgian-Muslims of Moroccan origin started a blood donation campaign in Liège "For goodness and friendship." The event, in which some 400 people donated blood, was co-organized by the Islamic Cultural Center, the Student Union of the University of Liège and the Belgian Red Cross. The annual program marked its first this week and blood donation locations are situated in three different parts of the city.
On other parts of the continent, many anti-Muslim attacks are being reported as governments undermine and ignore the societal problem. In one of the latest developments, the British government sacked its housing adviser, Roger Scruton, after he appeared to repeat anti-Semitic statements and denied anti-Muslim sentiments were a problem. In an interview with the New Statesman, Scruton glorified Hungarian right-wing Prime Minister Victor Orban and his immigration policies: "Hungarians were extremely alarmed by the sudden invasion of huge tribes of Muslims." He had also described Jews in Budapest as part of a "Soros empire."
Previously, the Muslim Council of Britain said: "As the Conservative Party faces its latest crisis on Islamophobia, it cannot continue with false promises to take the issue seriously whilst retaining people such as Mr. Scruton as a government adviser." Following the dismissal, a spokesman for the council said: "The reality is that these concerns will continue to recur until trust is rebuilt through an independent inquiry into Islamophobia in the party."