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Nearly 700 Islamophobic acts reported in 2014 in Francophone Belgium

Friday, 24 April 2015

The association Muslims Rights Belgium (MRB) released its third annual report on Islamophobia. It reported 696 reports of Islamophobic discrimination in Francophone Belgium.

Complaints, collected online, primarily concern the professional world (183) and education (141). In the latter, access difficulties are reported and some teachers and prefects alike are pointed out for the excesses in their teaching method.

Unlike previous years, 17 physical and verbal abuses have been reported. "In 2014, there has been very clearly a shift from words to actions resulting in violent attitudes on public roads: projectiles, hitting, spitting, repetitive scarf grubbing, more specifically on converted women ..." , says Benyekhlef Fouad, director of the association.

"We also feel that the victims of aggression have less trust in institutions and their political representatives … And that they do not formally complain. " Only 16% of respondents have taken steps.

Nearly three quarters of the complaints (73%) are filed by women, primarily by those wearing headscarves. Veiled women represent 82% of victims of physical or verbal aggression and 71% of victims in the area of ‚Äč‚Äčinstitutions, agencies and public authorities. Persons reporting Islamophobic discrimination are 59% of young people aged 18 to 29 years. 96% are of Belgian nationality.

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