British Muslims fear more discrimination in the wake of Theresa May’s appointment as the new British Prime Minister, a report says.
Britain’s new Prime Minister Theresa May has made a reputation for damaging Muslim communities and her anti-Muslim policies are not likely to change now that she leads the country, a new report shows.
The former home secretary, who overtook from David Cameron on Wednesday, has pledged to fight extremism by promoting British values like the freedom of speech, the very right she took from Muslim students in British universities by proposing the so-called Counter Terrorism and Security Bill in November 2014, according to the British daily The Independent.
The bill, which was later passed by the UK parliament, kept Muslim students from voicing their opinions in lectures and seminars for fear of being accused of extremism.
The abuse did not end there as the bill soon gave rise to Islamophobia by framing terrorism as a “Muslim problem,” the daily added.
The over-exaggerated image of radicalism that was painted in the bill resulted in a wave of maltreatment against Muslims, where in one case even a 4-year-old boy was almost referred to a counter-extremism program after drawing a cucumber that teachers mistook for a “cooker bomb.”
Under May’s rule, Muslims were further alienated from the British society due to the presence of so-called “Prevent” officers who effectively spied on them, the report noted.
These are only some of the reasons that May was dubbed the “Islamophobe of the Year” by the London-based Islamic Human Rights Commission last year.
British Muslims unanimously agree that May’s actions as Home Secretary made hatred and violence toward Muslims “a social norm,” the daily wrote, predicting a worsening trend now that she leads the country.
The Independent likened Britain’s 3-million Muslim population to “an iceberg being violently prodded by May to move further away from their faith.”
The hostility towards Muslims in the UK has deepened over the past years, with more than a quarter of 18 to 24-year-olds in the country saying they do not trust them.
This is while, according to a new survey, British Muslims are facing an “explosion” in faith-based hate crimes, which will get much worse following the UK’s exit from the European Union (EU) that was decided by 52 percent of the country’s voters on June 23.
Tell MAMA, an anti-Muslim hate monitoring group based in London, said in its annual report that Islamophobic incidents in the UK increased by 326 percent last year, rising from 146 to 437 cases.