International Day to Combat Islamophobia Date in the current year: March 15, 2024

International Day to Combat Islamophobia The International Day to Combat Islamophobia is one of the official international days in the UN. It is observed annually on March 15 in order to encourage tolerance and peace centered on respect for the diversity of beliefs and religions and respect for fundamental human rights.

The term “Islamophobia” refers to prejudice against, fear of, or hatred of Islam or Muslims in general, especially when seen as a source of terrorism or a geopolitical force. Although the term Islamophobia originated in the early 20th century, it didn’t become popular in ideological debate until the September 11 attacks.

There is no uniform opinion on how to classify Islamophobia. Some scholars consider it a form of racism or xenophobia, some consider Islamophobia to be partially overlapping with or closely related to racism, and some think that Islamophobia and racism are two completely unrelated phenomena because religion and race are two different things.

There is no consensus on the causes of Islamophobia either. There is an opinion that Islamic extremism is the principal cause of an increase in Islamophobia. Some commentators associate it with the increased Muslim presence in the EU and the United States, and others think that it was the emergence of a global Muslim identity that has caused an increase in Islamophobia.

The manifestations of Islamophobia include hate speech, violence against Muslims, and discrimination. The negative consequences of Islamophobia include, among other things, limited access to employment, education and housing, discriminatory travel bans, an increase in anti-Islamic hate crimes, etc.

Muslim women and girls in particular are often targeted for the way they dress. There’s even a special term, “hijabophobia”, that describes cultural and religious discrimination about Muslim women who wear hijab and other Islamic veils. Hijabophobia is a gender-specific type of Islamophobia that has had manifestations in working places, public spaces, schools, and sports.

The International Day to Combat Islamophobia was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2022. A resolution to establish the day was introduced by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, cosponsored by 55 primarily Muslim states, and adopted unanimously.

The date of the observance, March 15, was chosen to honor the victims of the 2019 mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand. A single gunmen entered two mosques during Friday prayer, killed 51 people and injured 40. The perpetrator was arrested and sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.

The International Day to Combat Islamophobia is marked by activities that promote intercultural and interreligious dialogue, mutual understanding and peace, emphasize that violent extremism and terrorism should not be associated with any religion, and express condolences to victims of Islamophobia and their families.

UN observances related to the International Day to Combat Islamophobia include the International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief, the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and others.

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