French author lambasts Islamophobia in Europe

The Peninsula
DOHA: One of the speakers at the Doha Forum lambasted politicians for perpetrating Islamophobia in European countries at their own advantage, during a Doha Forum session yesterday at Doha Sheraton.

“Can we have stability when we have fear everywhere?” Azouz Begag, French author and researcher at CNRS, former Delegate Minister for Equal Opportunities of France opened his speech in front of hundreds of participants during the discussion on ‘International Stability’.

Begag said some politicians in democratic Europe are using fear of Islam and Muslims in order to win elections. “I’m sorry to say that there are some politicians who maximise the fear of ‘Arab Islamic invasion’ and threat of Islamophobia to win elections,” he said.

He said in France alone there are over 10 million Arabs but they represent not a single seat in the National Assembly. Other European countries also have the same story. Islamophobia is on the rise and that Muslims in Europe have their dignities trampled upon because they are Muslims.

“They have problems finding jobs because their name is Ahmad or Mohammad,” he cited an example. There are still many things to do to find solutions to Islamophobia which is a cause of instability in many countries in Europe. “Fear emerges out of ignorance. We have to close the gaps by promoting understanding among people through education,” he said adding people have to understand that there is no international Arab community.

He thanked Qatar for the Doha Forum which to his is an excellent venue for ‘meeting to find meaning and to look for stability we are all hoping for.” The Peninsula

May 11, 2011, the Peninsula

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