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  • NGO coalition statement following 4th European Commission Round Table on anti-Muslim hatred
  • STRENGTHENING ACTIONS AGAINST ISLAMOPHOBIA Next steps for the European Commission

  • On Friday December 8th, several NGOs from the European coalition against Islamophobia  [1]attended the 4th roundtable on Anti-muslim hatred and discrimination organised by the European Commission and chaired by the coordinator on combating this form of racism, David Friggieri. This marks two years now since his appointment and it was the occasion for civil society organisations to look back at the past two years and evaluate the progress achieved and the work yet to be done.


    Discussions highlighted the increasingly worrying situation faced by Muslim communities in Europe, as pointed by recent reports issued by the FRA or by the European Islamophobia Report 2017, to name but a few. Organisations part of the European coalition against Islamophobia emphasized the imperative need for a group effort to enable tangible progress on the fight against Islamophobia across Europe and is looking forward to strengthened relations and partnerships between its members.


    The group discussions also highlighted the need for stronger and more concrete commitment and actions by the European Commission. With the hindsight of these past two years, there is a feeling amongst CSOs that there is still some misconceptions by the European institutions with regards to the issue of Islamophobia. With the generalized suspicion against Muslims, it is of utmost importance for EU policy makers not to fall into the trap of treating Muslims as potential problems but rather as human beings whose fundamental rights can be violated. Combating Islamophobia is not about preventing radicalism or terrorism - which are very important societal issues dealt with under other relevant policy strands- it is about politically addressing evidenced and structural forms of discrimination and racism affecting Muslims or those perceived as such.

    While the issue of Islamophobia has gained more visibility in recent years at EU level and the coalition praises the efforts of the European Commission that helped in achieved this, there is hence a clear need for stronger actions beyond symbolism. As such, on the occasion of the 4th roundtable on Anti-Muslim hatred, a list of concrete recommendations for actions has been drafted by civil society experts. 


    Specific policies are needed at national level, to address Islamophobia, including its structural dimensions and impact on economic and social outcomes for Muslims.  The coalition believes the European Commission and its coordinator on combating Anti-Muslim hatred have the potential to guide Member States towards these policies and materialise recognition into concrete political actions. As such we are looking forward to strengthen close and transparent collaboration with the European commission to reach these objectives which would allow us to achieve a better and more inclusive Europe for all.

    Read full list of recommendations as pdf  here.

    ("STRENGTHENING ACTIONS AGAINST ISLAMOPHOBIA - Next steps for the European Commission", By the European coalition against Islamophobia, December 2017 )

    [1] Informal platform of NGOs working on combatting islamophobia at national and European level. For more information, please contact Hajar El Jahidi

  • 21.12.2017
European Forum of Muslim Women EFOMW
Rue Archim├Ęde 50, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium