Islamophobia ‘on rise in Netherlands’

The Muslim minority are facing violence and discrimination due to the new wave of Islamophobia in the Netherlands, an anti-racism group says. The findings were released in a report by a pan-European anti-racism commission, AFP reported.

The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) found that Islamophobia in the Netherlands had ‘increased dramatically’ since 2000. It also reported that Muslims were ‘disproportionately targeted’ by security policies and faced racist violence and discrimination.

The report went on to add that this was fuelled by events both occurring within the country and outside, such as the 9/11 attacks on the US. “The tone of Dutch political and public debate around integration and other issues relevant to ethnic minorities has experienced a dramatic deterioration”. It warned of a “worrying polarization between majority and minority communities.”

The country’s Muslim community of around one million – six percent of the population – had also faced “stereotyping, stigmatizing”, “outright racist political discourse” and “biased media portrayal”.

Press TV, 11 February 2008

See also Associated Press, 12 February 2008